Priyam Garg said he was relaxed when fellow rookie Abhishek Sharma walked in to bat with their team Sunrisers Hyderabad precariously placed in their Indian Premier League match against Chennai Super Kings on Friday as they are familiar with each others’ strengths.
The Sunrisers’ young middle-order rose to the occasion after top guns David Warner (28), Jonny Bairstow (0), Kane Williamson (9), Manish Pandey (29) failed to fire, securing a seven-run win against MS Dhoni and Co.
Garg, who notched up his first IPL fifty, and Sharma (31) resurrected Sunrisers’ innings after they were reeling at 69/4 The duo stitched a 77-run stand for the fifth wicket as Sunrisers collected 53 runs in the last four overs to reach a competitive 164/5.
“I had no pressure when Abhishek came in to bat, because we know each other and our strengths, Garg told Sharma in a video posted on the IPL website.
“We both gelled well together and enjoyed each others’ batting. I felt really good about scoring my first IPL fifty,” he added.
Garg was also involved in a horrible mix up that cost the wicket of Williamson.
After losing the wicket of skipper Warner, Williamson flicked the very next ball to mid-wicket and called for a quick single. However, Garg barely responded and the senior batsman was left stranded mid-pitch.
“It felt really bad when he got run-out. He was a set batsman. That he was run-out was a mistake, but everything went alright after that,” he said.
But all was forgiven after Garg’s stellar knock. “When I went back to the dug out, he said to me ‘don’t worry mate, forget about it. You’ve batted really well,” Garg said.
Garg, who led the Indian Under-19 team in this year’s World Cup, comes from a humble background. His father drove school buses and sold milk to fuel his cricketing ambitions.
The 19-year-old, who was bought by Sunrisers for Rs 1.9 crore, entered the IPL on the back of some impressive knocks in the Ranji Trophy.
Meanwhile Sharma, who was a part of the Indian team that won the 2018 Under-19 World Cup, said he decided to go after Ravindra Jadeja.
“I thought I could take 3-4 balls to get in, but that turned into 7-8 balls. Priyam was batting very well, so I thought I shouldn’t be the one negating the runs, so I decided to target Ravindra Jadeja,” Sharma said.
Sharma was trained by World Cup-winning India all-rounder Yuvraj Singh at PCA’s new stadium in Mohali during the off season.
With PTI Inputs