Washington Sundar opener: The Indian all-rounder has been promoted to open the batting in IPL 2021 season opener tonight.
During the first match of the ongoing 14th season of the Indian Premier League between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore in Chennai, Royal Challengers Bangalore surprised one and all by sending all-rounder Washington Sundar as captain Virat Kohli’s opening partner.
With regular opener Devdutt Padikkal missing this match, Royal Challengers had to send in a makeshift opener. With Bangalore playing debutant Rajat Patidar tonight, the right-hand batsman from Madhya Pradesh was expected to accompany Kohli but it wasn’t to be as Sundar was promoted in the batting order.
Look who has walked out to open 👀
— Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) April 9, 2021
Washington Sundar opener in IPL 2021
Sundar, who had dismissed Mumbai Indians opening batsman Chris Lynn (49) in the first innings, stepped out as an opening batsman for the first time in his IPL career.
Having done exceedingly well in Test cricket of late, Kohli and the team management must have thought of making the most of Sundar’s confidence for the southpaw is coming on the back of scoring three Test half-centuries.
It also made sense to open with an in-form Sundar for he was playing at his home ground at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. Having said that, he couldn’t generate the desired impact as an ordinary shot against Krunal Pandya saw him departing for 10 (16).
Fans must note that this is not the first time when Sundar has opened the batting in T20 cricket. Playing for Tamil Nadu in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, Sundar had opened the batting across three seasons.
In 10 T20 innings as an opening batsman for his state, Sundar had scored 223 runs at an average and strike rate of 24.77 and 129.65 respectively before tonight.