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‘We were convinced to keep him in our scheme of things’ – Vijay Dahiya shares about spotting Mayank Yadav’s talent

Mayank Yadav. (Source -Twitter/X)

In big franchise cricket like the IPL, talent scouts play a crucial role in finding the next big stars. For Lucknow Super Giants, it was then assistant coach Vijay Dahiya whose sharp eye spotted the raw pace of Mayank Yadav, paving the way for the young speedster’s dream IPL debut.

Yadav had a dream debut on March 30 with his blistering pace, consistently breaching the 150 kmph mark against Punjab Kings. His 155.8 kmph delivery is the fastest of the ongoing season and the sixth fastest overall in IPL history. Yadav’s match-winning spell of 3/27 earned him the Player of the Match award in his very first match for the franchise.

Dahiya, a former India wicketkeeper, first noticed Yadav’s potential during a practice session between Delhi and Haryana. The then-head coach of the Uttar Pradesh side revealed that he positioned himself between the net sessions of both teams to see the pacer’s bowling. Later on , he informed about Mayank to LSG’s then-mentor Gautam Gambhir.

“I told Gautam about Mayank and said, We should keep an eye on him. When we sat at the auction table after finalizing the strategy for the 2022 mega auction, we were convinced to keep him in our scheme of things and that’s how he got picked for LSG,” Dahiya told Bhaskar Live.

Also read: Brett Lee passes verdict after Mayank Yadav’s heroics against PBKS

The pace stands out for him: Vijay Dahiya

Talking about the youngster’s pace, “The pace stands out for him and what happens at times is, when you want to get convinced, a couple of balls or shots are good enough. That was the case with somebody like him, and there is no substitute as far as the raw pace is concerned, although he was not bowling at this pace, he was looking completely different than anyone else from there,” he added.

Dahiya viewed him as a long-term investment. “I told people who mattered after the auction that, We are not buying him thinking that he will play this year for us, but he will be ready by next year onwards,” the coach mentioned.

“He was all set to play last year, but in a practice scenario, he unfortunately got injured (tore his hamstring) and couldn’t play in the season. If not for the injury, he would have made his IPL debut last year,” he added.

However, Dahiya was quick to credit LSG captain KL Rahul for backing his judgment and giving Yadav the opportunity.

“Identifying somebody is one part, but looking after him and giving a platform is the most important part. Credit needs to be given to KL as well, where he believed and gave him the opportunity, although the toss was done by Nicholas Pooran,” he said.

Also read: Stuart Broad hypes up the much-awaited RCB-LSG clash

“But I still believe it’s KL’s input because JL (head coach Justin Langer) has joined in this year and the people who were in the set-up from day one are not there. It’s about the belief KL had in him of starting the first home game with the youngster,” Dahiya concluded.

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