Duleep Trophy 2022: Mumbai all-rounder Shams Mulani aims to replicate success of 2021-22 season

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Duleep Trophy 2022: Mumbai all-rounder Shams Mulani aims to replicate success of 2021-22 season
Duleep Trophy 2022: Mumbai all-rounder Shams Mulani aims to replicate success of 2021-22 season

Duleep Trophy 2022: Mumbai all-rounder Shams Mulani aims to replicate success of 2021-22 season

Duleep Trophy 2022: Mumbai all-rounder Shams Mulani is aiming to replicate his performance of domestic cricket in 2021-22 in the ongoing season, which started with Duleep Trophy in early September.

Mulani excelled with both the bat and the ball in the 2021–22 season. With 45 victories, he was the leading wicket-taker in the Ranji Trophy. In addition, he played outstandingly in the Ranji tournament, amassing 321 runs in nine innings at an average of 40.12, including five half-centuries. Mulani also helped Mumbai win the under-25 CK Nayadu Trophy. Mulaniu missed out on his first-class hundred against North East Zone in the current 2022–23 Duleep Trophy season by three runs. He intends to repeat his outstanding results from last season since he does not want to rest on his laurels.

“I would have been happier if I would have gotten a hundred. But it is a learning process for me as well – as to how to play when you are in the nineties – and this game was a good practice game for us because obviously they had a good bowling attack,” ESPNCricinfo quoted Mulani as saying after his team West Zone drew with North East Zone.

“And just because the wicket was not helping much does not mean they did not bowl well. The batters came in and said: ‘They were on the money and they were bowling well’. Going into the season, it is a good start, and hopefully, this continues – the good form I have with bat and ball. I’ll try to repeat what I did last year,” he added.

Mulani put in a lot of effort over the course of 26 overs, but he was only able to claim one wicket due to the unfavourable Chepauk pitch.

Duleep Trophy 2022: Mumbai all-rounder Shams Mulani aims to replicate success of 2021-22 season
Duleep Trophy 2022: Mumbai all-rounder Shams Mulani aims to replicate success of 2021-22 season

The all-around player is prepared to bowl for his club for extended stretches.

“Last season was phenomenal for me. But that is in the past now, and I want to take a fresh start because the wickets are going to be different and I need to bowl on tough tracks where the ball is not spinning that much and not doing much,” said the bowler.

“I need to chip in with the wickets [on those pitches] as well. Yes, last season was very good for me and everyone was saying, ‘Wow, well done!’, but I’m not looking forward to the new season [in terms of wickets only]. Going forward, I’m working on my bowling – on how to bowl long spells with the same amount of revolutions. Let’s see if that comes off,” he added.

In both Chennai and Puducherry, bowlers found it challenging during the opening round of the Duleep Trophy when using the Kookaburra ball. It began to seem sharp, but as the game progressed, it grew softer and favoured the batters more. Even Mulani, who was using the ball for the first time, acknowledged that it was challenging to hold.

“I think it is my first time playing with the Kookaburra ball, and I had a similar experience to what he [North-East spinner Ankur Malik] had. After 20-25 overs, the seam goes away – it’s not like the SG ball. And there was not much help from the wicket. It’s quite difficult to grip as well. And try to bowl in good areas with good amount of revolutions,” he said.

But he added that his team needs to adjust before the semifinals and championship game, adding that it was a wonderful experience for him to understand how to bowl and what pace to utilise with a Kookaburra ball.

Mulani has also received considerable attention from cricket players outside of Mumbai. He led the Mumbai team on a white-ball tour to Oman the previous year. When he finished as the second-highest taker with nine kills in seven games. And also a fantastic economy rate of 4.78.

He also travelled to the UK with the Mumbai Indians delegation before to this home season. Young people like Dewald Brevis and Tilak Varma were also a part of it.

“Oh, it was amazing. Different conditions, different wickets that offered more bounce. I needed to get used to what length I needed to bowl on that track. It was a very good experience, and we enjoyed it a lot,” said Mulani about his experiences.

West Zone will play their next game in September, with semi-final of the Duleep Trophy scheduled against Central Zone.