Hyderabad: The tall Muralikrishna Prasidh Krishna, the hero of Saturday’s encounter against hosts Sunrisers Hyderabad, was not the first choice of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in this year’s IPL tournament.
The 22-year-old Karnataka fast bowler was inducted into the team after the Indian under-19 World Cup pacer Kamlesh Nagarkoti was ruled out because of injury.
Though a late entry, Prasidh has already caught the eye in the five matches he has played so far and has captured nine wickets with four of them coming in Saturday’s match against SRH. Unsuccessful in his first over, Prasidh took his first wicket in the 16th over when he removed a well-settled Shikhar Dhawan with a slower one. Then in the 20th over he removed Manish Pandey, Shakib-Al-Hasan and Rashid Khan to return with super figures of 4 for 30. It proved to be the turning point of the match.
Prasidh Krishna, in an interview to the IPL website, said there was nothing better than contributing to the team’s victory. “I’m very happy with that. I knew I had to make up for the 11 runs I gave, the bad over that I bowled in the first over. I believed in myself and backed myself to do that,” he said.
The Karnataka pace bowler said he was a very keen observer. “I learn a lot watching others bowl, set the field – and all the years that I didn’t play I was sitting at home and observing these things. I’m glad that whatever I plan and execute is coming out well.”
Incidentally, Prasidh Krishna made his first class debut in 2015 against the visiting Bangladesh ‘A’ side in Mysuru when J Arunkumar was coach of the Karnataka team. He has not played first class cricket after that match. “I played him against Bangladesh and he straightaway captured five wickets. But he could not find a place in the eleven after that as Karnataka had pace bowlers like Vinay Kumar, Abhimanyu Mithun and Sreenath Arvind. I was impressed with his pace. He has a high-arm action,” said Arunkumar, who is the coach of the Hyderabad team now.
Even this season, he could not find a place in the Karnataka side and played as a replacement for the injured Arvind in the Subbaiah Pillay one-day tournament. He straightaway made an impression before he got a look in for KKR.
Prasidh Krishna said he always believed that one has to be ready all the time because you never know when chances will come. “So I was ready, and I’m glad it’s coming out good. And it’s not yet done – hoping we are going to make it through this year.”
Arunkumar said that Prasidh Krishna is a very intelligent bowler. “Two years ago he played for Bellary Tuskers and Bengaluru Blasters in the T20 Karnataka Premier League. He performed very well.”
The Hyderabad coach said Prasidh Krishna has the talent to be in the national team. “But I feel he should play in the Ranji Trophy season and that would help him to be a better bowler. I think he will be ready if he plays a full season in first class cricket. He is definitely an exciting talent.”