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Vyshak Vijaykumar - RCB's latest local boy

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Last updated on 15 Apr 2023 | 03:07 PM
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Vyshak Vijaykumar - RCB's latest local boy

After going unsold in the 2023 IPL auction, he joined RCB as a net bowler for the current season.

A three-fer on debut is something very few manage to achieve. But RCB's Vyshak Vijaykumar managed to do just that while playing for his home franchise in front of his home crowd. 

He might be a household name now in local cricketing circles, but he made a name for himself in the (now defunct) Karnataka Premier League as a tearaway pacer. As a 20-year-old, he regularly breached the 135 mark and left everyone in awe. 

Picking the brains of the likes of Brett Lee, Dean Jones, and Mitchell Johnson, he realized early on that the only barrier to his bowling was fitness. Having always been slightly on the heavier side, he started focusing a lot more on this aspect. 

A leaner, fitter Vyshak then made his way into the Karnataka team for the 2021 Vijay Hazare and Syed Mushtaq Ali tournaments. 

The 26-year-old forced everyone to sit up and take notice in the recent SMAT edition. Vyshak took 15 wickets in eight innings and took a wicket every 11 balls. He did this while conceding at 6.3 RPO. Vyshak has always had that raw pace but he has now developed a pretty good knuckleball; he was Karnataka’s go-to bowler at the back end of the innings.

After going unsold in the 2023 IPL auction, he joined RCB as a net bowler for the current season. An injury to Rajat Patidar helped him pave his way into the team.

Coming to the RCB-DC encounter, RCB batted first and scraped through to set a target of 175 for the visitors. It was baptism by fire, as Vyshak was summoned by Faf du Plessis to bowl the difficult sixth over in the powerplay. 

The move paid quick dividends as got David Warner out in his fourth delivery. A slower length ball outside off, and Warner could only miscue the pull to mid-wicket. 

Known to be a tricky customer, he tends to get the ball to skid through from a good length. He stuck to his strengths today as well, with more than 80% of his balls being good length or shorter. 

When brought back in the 12th over, he got the dangerous Axar Patel off a knuckleball. Axar tried to loft it over extra cover, but ended up lofting it to the fielder. 

Interestingly enough, both these slower balls came after a 140+ KMPH delivery, making it even harder for the batters to adjust. 

His third wicket was also off a slower ball, as Lalit Yadav holed out to long-off in a bid to get a move on. 

His spell of 3/20 helped RCB to get back to winning ways. Also, the lack of a domestic pacer to support Mohammed Siraj had hurt them in their losses against Lucknow Super Giants and Kolkata Knight Riders. Vyshak coming good would go a long way in RCB staking a claim for the title.

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