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ITL 2022: Abhishek Sharma to open alongside Kane Williamson for Hyderabad, confirms Muttiah Muralitharan

Hyderabad have always been over-dependent on their top-order. The likes of David Warner, Jonny Bairstow and Kane Williamson have always been amongst the runs for the orange army in the last few editions of the league. Thus, the franchise decided to get a lot of young and talented Indian players this time around in the recently concluded mega auction.

As Hyderabad managed to buy Rahul Tripathi and Abhishek Sharma, at least one of them is expected to open the innings in the upcoming season. Thus, Muttiah Muralitharan, who happens to be the spin-bowling coach of the 2016-champions, recently said that they plan to make Sharma open alongside Kane Williamson.

It is to be noted that the franchise spent INR 6.5 crore in order to acquire his services. Besides, he has been playing for Hyderabad since 2019. Thus, Muralitharan had heaps of praises for the youngster.

Our goal is to win the title this season: Muttiah Muralitharan

“Abhishek was pretty much part of our initial plans. He was in and out of the side last season, but we want him to assume greater responsibility this time. We want him to open the batting alongside Kane. That will help us get a good left-hand, right-hand combination at the top,” said Muttiah Muralitharan during an interview with Sportskeeda.

“Obviously, our goal is to win the title this season, but we have to plan for the next three years as well. That’s why the mega auction is so crucial for every team. We want Abhishek, [Priyam] Garg and Samad to contribute heavily and become the faces of the team going forward,” he added.

The legend also drew light on the team’s decision to go all out for Nicholas Pooran. Muralitharan said that their main aim was to get a keeper-batter who would be available for the entire season. He also stated that they initially wanted Ishan Kishan.

“As I said, we initially wanted to buy Kishan. But once his bid crossed our budget, we were forced to look for alternatives. Yes, [Jonny] Bairstow was available, but we had doubts on whether he would be available for the entire season. We wanted an international wicketkeeper who would be available for all the games, so we thought Pooran was the right choice once Kishan slipped away,” said Muttiah Muralitharan.

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