Shakib Al Hassan had to wait sometime before he got involved into the action in IPL 2012. The former Bangladesh captain was recently ranked as the top one day international player in the world. The young cricketer is an extremely talented all-rounder, and while Sunil Narine may continue to occupy the place of the spinner overseas’ player in Kolkata’s side, they must seriously considering keeping Al Hassan in their side.
This game was the young all-rounder’s to dominate from the very start. The pitch was a slow, turning track and it suited his left arm spin perfectly. Al Hassan came into the attack reasonably early and was immediately effective taking three wickets for 17 runs off of his four overs. He picked up the important wickets of openers Ajinhya Rahane and Rahul Dravid, and then cut Shreevats Goswami short when he appeared to be in good form.
He completed his all-round performance with the bat, where the six he hit in the penultimate over really put the game out of reach for Rajasthan. He was dismissed the following ball, but the damage had been done and the task of winning the game was fairly simple for Yusuf Pathan. Al Hassan only scored 16, but those 16 came off of just 10 balls.
Kolkata are a team that needs to find the balance and Al Hassan’s man of the match performance may just convince them that he can be a big part of that. He looks like a player who should be perfectly suited to the Kolkata wicket.