'No batter likes to face ball at 150 kmph' - Temba Bavuma on possibility of facing Umran Malik in upcoming T20Is

Umran Malik might make his India debut in the upcoming India-South Africa T20Is.

Umran Malik
Umran Malik. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

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South Africa skipper Temba Bavuma has expressed his thoughts on the possibility of facing Indian pacer Umran Malik in the upcoming T20I series in India. Malik hogged the limelight for consistently bowling over 150 kmph in the recently concluded Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022. He is now part of the Indian side, which is hosting South Africa for a five-match T20I series starting from June 9.

Umran Malik was first retained by Sunrisers Hyderabad ahead of the likes of experienced pacers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and T Natarajan before the mega auction in February. He finished the IPL 2022 season with 22 wickets from 14 matches, most by any Indian pacer. His consistency with speed got the attention of many, including Indian team selectors. He is now in contention to make his international debut in the upcoming series against South Africa.

South African players grow up facing fast bowlers: Temba Bavuma

South Africa has named their strongest possible lineup for the India tour, captained by Temba Bavuma. The 32-year-old middle-order batter was excellent against India at home in the Test and ODI series earlier this year. He also scored two crucial fifties against Bangladesh in his last two Test matches but is aware of the threat India poses at home. The Indian side is without key players Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, and Ravindra Jadeja for this series. But Bavuma has pointed out that India still has good and in-form players in their setup.

He also realizes the threat Umran Malik possesses in this series. He said no batter wants to face a bowl at 150 kmph, but the player has to prepare for that. The South African side also has a threatening pace unit in form of Anrich Nortje, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, and Marco Jansen but Bavuma is predicting a special tournament for Umran Malik.

“I think in South Africa we grow up facing fast bowlers but I don’t think no batter likes to face a ball at 150 kmph. But you prepare as well as you can. We also got guys who can bowl 150 kmph. So we have that weaponry in our arsenal. But Umran Malik is a special talent for Team India and I hope that he could emulate his IPL performance in international cricket,” – Temba Bavuma on Umran Malik.