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CSK Got Dwayne Bravos Replacement In Matheesha Pathirana, Feels Irfan Pathan



Matheesha Pathirana has so far taken 13 wickets in eight games for Chennai Super Kings in IPL 2023 with a best of 3/15.

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Matheesha Pathirana has been the find for CSK in IPL 2023. (Image: Twitter)

New Delhi: Former India pacer Irfan Pathan felt Chennai Super Kings have found a Dwayne Bravo’s replacement in Matheesha Pathirana. One of the few Sri Lankans in this season of Indian Premier League, Pathirana has kept Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s faith in him and has grabbed eyeballs with his superlative performances in the ongoing season.

“Every team looks for a bowler whom they can bank upon in the death overs. MI (Mumbai Indians) had Malinga, they have Bumrah. KKR had Sunil Narine during two IPL seasons when they lifted the trophy.

“CSK had Bravo and now they have Pathirana. He’s a perfect replacement, plus he has genuine pace,” Pathan said on Star Sports’ Cricket Live. Brought in the side as a replacement player in the previous season, Pathirana didn’t get much opportunities in IPL 2023.

However, the Lankan pacer was given a bigger run this time and has so far taken 13 wickets in eight games with a best of 3/15. Known as Lasith malinga 2.0, Pathirana has a similar bowling action like the legendary Lankan pacer and constantly hit the 150kmph mark in IPL 2023.

His bowling at death has also been the biggest plus point for Dhoni and CSK as the 20-year-old picked 12 wickets between overs 16 and 20, the most by any bowler in IPL 2023. Dhoni was so impressed with Pathirana that he even adviced the Sri Lanka Cricket to not use him in Tests.

“People who don’t have very clean (conventional) action, batsmen have a difficult time picking it and when trying to go after the bowler,” said Dhoni after CSK defeated Mumbai Indians. “But his consistency, varitation, pace makes him special.

“What’s important is to keep an eye on how much cricket he is playing. I feel he should not play red-ball cricket, not even get close to it, even play only ICC tournaments with ODIs and keep the rest as less as possible, because he’s not someone who’ll change a lot

“This is what he’ll do. So you can always use him at crucial times. But make sure he’s fit and available for all the ICC tournaments and he’ll be a great asset for Sri Lanka. Not to forget, he’s a really young boy.

“Last time he came, he was very lean but has put on muscle and is stronger. I feel he’ll serve for a long time in Sri Lankan cricket but he’ll have to keep an eye on how much he bowls,” Dhoni added.

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