With five-time Indian T20 League champions Mumbai already knocked out of the playoff race in the ongoing edition of the tournament, fans are hoping to see Arjun Tendulkar, son of India cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar, finally make his Indian T20 League debut against Delhi in their final league match of the season at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday, May 21.
Despite being part of the Mumbai franchise for the last two years, left-arm fast bowler Arjun has failed to make the cut in the playing XI. The 22-year-old was acquired by Mumbai for INR 30 lakh during the Indian T20 League 2022 mega auction held in Bengaluru in February. He was also bought by Mumbai for INR 20 lakh in the 2021 auction.
Primarily a left-arm pacer who can bat, Arjun has already made his debut for his domestic side Mumbai against Haryana in the 2020-21 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. He has picked two wickets in two matches that he has played so far at the domestic level.
Having been part of the Mumbai franchise as a net bowler even before he was picked in the Indian T20 League auction, Arjun deserves to make his debut, having impressed in the nets.
Here we list out a few reasons why Arjun Tendulkar must make his Indian T20 League debut against Delhi.
Play Arjun Tendulkar in place of Jasprit Bumrah
While Mumbai secured just three wins in 13 matches this season, star bowler Jasprit Bumrah has once again been the standout player of the franchise in the Indian T20 League 2022. Bumrah has bagged 12 wickets in 13 matches at an impressive economy of 7.25.
With Mumbai planning for the immediate future, it is just the perfect time to rest Bumrah and give Arjun Tendulkar an opportunity in the final game of the season. As the Indian cricket team is scheduled to play South Africa, Ireland, England and West Indies in the next few months, Bumrah needs to be rested as part of workload management. In place of Bumrah, a talented youngster like Arjun could be fielded against Delhi.
Mumbai have used 22 of their 26 players this season
Mumbai have given an opportunity to almost every player in their squad this season. As many as 22 of their 26 players have played at least one game in Indian T20 League 2022. The most decorated franchise of the Indian T20 League has handed debuts to the likes of David Brevis, Tim David, Tristan Stubbs, Tilak Verma, Hrithik Shokeen and Sanjay Yadav. Apart from these 22 players, only Arjun Tendulkar, Aryan Juyal, Akash Madwal and Rahul Buddhi are yet to get a game this season. Considering Mumbai are already out of the playoff race, all the remaining players could be given an opportunity to showcase their talent.
Indian left-arm pacers have been successful in Indian T20 League 2022
Several Indian left-arm fast bowlers including Punjab’s Arshdeep Singh, Mohsin Khan of Lucknow, Chennai’s Mukesh Choudhary and Yash Dayal of Gujarat have had successful Indian T20 League 2022 campaigns so far. The Indian cricket team has been looking for a consistent left-arm pacer ever since the retirement of Zaheer Khan and Ashish Nehra. Looking at the various left-arm fast bowlers in the Indian T20 League, Tendulkar junior could be another left-arm option and it is just the right time that Rohit Sharma and Mumbai team management pick Arjun Tendulkar in the playing XI against Delhi.
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Featured photo: Ishara S. KODIKARA / AFP