What’s the story?
Nitish Rana is undoubtedly the best uncapped player of this year’s IPL so far, having scored 266 runs at an average of 38 and a strike rate of 135.02, he is the fourth highest run-scorer of the IPL. Rana has credited KKR skipper and Delhi teammate Gautam Gambhir for his batting success at the tournament.
Gambhir had previously advised Rana to switch from a low stance to a more upright one and to open his left shoulder while batting.
In an interview with Hindustan Times, Rana stated, "As my form dipped and I got out early in a couple of one-dayers, Gambhir spoke to me regarding my technique. After coming over here, I spoke to Sachin sir and Mahela sir regarding the same and both said that Gambhir was right and from the first day I started practicing that way. I have a low stance and there was a problem with me being side-on. They asked me to be upright and open up my shoulder a bit more to help me get a better look at the ball."
In case you did not know...
Rana has established himself as an important player in the Mumbai Indians batting line-up through his sensational performances in the IPL so far. He has scored 266 runs at an average of 38 and has scored three half-centuries with his highest score being a 34-ball 62 against the Kings XI Punjab where he hit seven sixes and no boundaries.
The Delhi batsman has been adjudged the Man of the Match in two matches so far, once against Kolkata Knight Riders and then against Gujarat Lions, scoring 50 and 53 in those matches, respectively. On both occasions, Mumbai Indians chased down a total of 175+.
The heart of the matter
The 23-year old Rana had a very disappointing Ranji Trophy season with Delhi and following this poor run of form, Gambhir had advised him to change his batting stance.
The left-hander paid heed to the advice and this change turned out to be extremely fruitful as he has now become one of MI’s most integral entities and is one of the biggest reasons why Mumbai Indians are at the top of the table with six wins and two defeats.
After a poor outing against Rising Pune Supergiants, Rana will now be looking to make amends for his shortcomings by putting up a strong performance in Mumbai Indians’ next game against Gujarat Lions at Rajkot on Saturday.
Gambhir’s advice looks to be working very well for Rana as he has been in scintillating form in the IPL so far and is a dark horse to make the squad for the forthcoming Champions Trophy. Provided he keeps on performing like this for the remainder of the tournament, a call-up to the national side is not far away.