Just like every season, the 2020 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) produced some of the most enthralling youngsters and future superstars of the captivating game. One of the major finds of IPL 2020 was Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) opener Devdutt Padikkal.
The 20-year-old caught everyone’s attention with his solid technique, impressive temperament, and outstanding ability to provide not only a good start to his team but also form crucial partnerships with other batsmen.
Padikkal played a key role behind RCB’s entry to the playoffs after 4-long years. No wonder, the left-handed batsman was awarded the Emerging Player of the Season trophy for his spectacular show with the willow.
During his stint with RCB in the thirteenth season of the cash-rich league, Padikkal faced some of the best bowlers of the world. But amongst them was the toughest to face for the Bangalore-lad? Well, Padikkal has himself revealed the most challenging bowler he faced during the tournament.
Padikkal picked Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) spinner, Rashid Khan, as the most difficult bowler to tackle. The explosive batter said that he has faced quick bowlers in the domestic circuit, but batting against someone like Rashid was not easy at all.
“Pace, not really because there are quite a few bowlers who are pretty quick in the domestic circuit as well. Probably the one bowler I felt was challenging was [legspinner] Rashid Khan because he has a really good pace and turns the ball at the same time. He’s not easy to pick. I think while facing him I felt like, “Okay, this is something I’m not used to,” Padikkal said in an interview with ESPNcricinfo.
“Next goal is to play for India:” Padikkal
The southpaw admitted that his next goal is to play for the country. Padikkal said that whenever he gets the opportunity to play in India jersey, he will grab it with both hands.
“Now, the next step would be to play for the country. It’s something everyone dreams of as a cricketer, so I’m looking forward to doing that soon. I’ll continue to work on my game, continue to improve and, whenever I get the opportunity, I’ll take it with both hands,” added Padikkal.
Padikkal notched up 473 runs in 15 matches to finish IPL 2020 as the top-scorer for Challengers. He smashed five fifties in the competition to accomplish the record for most half-centuries by an uncapped batsman in his debut season.