It was Sunday morning, but Gujjar Nagar in Jammu could not stop talking about Sunday night.
Then Umran Mallik, the son of a local fruit and vegetable vendor, played for Sunrisers Hyderabad in his first IPL 150 km.
Umran was not the first Indian to touch that magic mark — Javagal Srinath, Varun Aaron and Jaspreet Bumra were among those who have been there before — but the cricketing frenzy over the young teal finger and 150 milestone has provoked a growing sensation in 21 years. -Old.
It was a long journey for India’s latest pace sensation, and his father Abdul Mallik was worried for a while. Occasionally, when Umran leaves to play tennis ball cricket at night, his father secretly follows him.
“You know how this age is. There are a lot of young people who are taking drugs and ruining their lives. I was worried. But he (Umran) convinced us that he was playing the only ‘nasha’ (high) cricket he had, so the family need not worry. Sometimes, I just hide and see if he’s really playing, ”said the now-exiled father, Abdul, to The Indian Express.
From being a net bowler for the Sunrisers to rubbing shoulders on match day with the greats of the game in the IPL, life moved fast for Umran, who started his career four years ago on a concrete pitch in Gujjar. In the IPL nets, he embarrassed teammate David Warner and, in his debut, hit a steady 140kmph in his first over, harassing the likes of young Indian star Shubman Gill.
However, his actual journey began a short while ago when Umran landed at the coaching nets near his home without even proper cricket shoes. “He’s a normal lanky boy. He wanted to bowl in the nets. I said, ‘Okay, bowl. We have a player who plays for the J&K team.’ Can be encouraged to play ‘. Who knew he was playing in the IPL three years ago, “said coach Randhir Singh Manhas.
Umran went to Jammu for the Under-19 trials and was later selected for the J&K team. He was spotted by J&K veteran Pervez Rasool and coach Irfan Pathan, who are looking for talent across the region. “Some of the junior players on our side were afraid to face him. They were afraid they would hit themselves. He had raw speed, which caught everyone’s attention,” Rasool said.
Former India bowler Pathan was also impressed. “You can know his pace as the wicket-keeper collects his deliveries. He’s a natural fast bowler. Like any little kid, he loved to hit batsmen, hitting their thigh pads. He was green, he jumped high when landing, so we worked on it,” Pathan said. Said.
J&K gave Umran a chance last season when Vijay Hazare and Syed Mustaq played a game in the Ali Trophy tournaments. Soon after, his friend Abdul Samad, who plays for the Sunrisers, recommended his name as a net bowler.
And this season, when pacer T Natarajan missed due to Kovid, Umran got a chance to substitute. “He bowled superbly to Warner in a net session, and was not given a chance. His raw speed impressed everyone and that is why he was selected as a replacement for Natarajan,” Pathan said.
Pathan believes Umran will face a big challenge with the red ball in first-class cricket. But now, back in Gujjar Nagar, Abdul is enjoying his 15 minutes of fame with his son at a speed of 150 kmph. “God be merciful, I never thought my son would play in the IPL. I will sell fruits and vegetables, which is a dream come true for all of us. Now, I hope he will one day play for India,” the father said.