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IPL Auction 2024: Rizvi, the right-handed Raina, gets the perfect platform to make it big

IPL Auction 2024: Sameer Rizvi, the right-handed Raina, all you need to know about him. CSK bought Sameer Rizvi for INR 8.4 crore. Who is Sameer Rizvi?

IPL 2024 Auction: Sameer Rizvi was bought by CSK for INR 8.4 crore in Auction | Walking Wicket  (Photo_ ©CricCrazyJohns/Twitter
Sameer Rizvi was bought by CSK for INR 8.4 crore in Auction (Photo: ©CricCrazyJohns/Twitter)

Called the right-handed Suresh Raina, Sameer Rizvi, 20, from Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, is the top earner among uncapped Indian players in the IPL 2024 auction. He was bagged by CSK for INR 8.40 crore. His base price was just INR 20 lakh. Three teams bid fiercely for him before CSK got him.

He was coached by his maternal uncle Tanqib Akhtar at Gandhibagh Academy in Meerut. Rizvi claims his uncle, a failed cricketer, always supported him in his journey, while his father always asked Rizvi to concentrate on his studies. It is only very recently that Rizvi completed his 10th standard exams.

Rizvi made his Ranji Trophy debut in 2020 at 16 years but he didn’t get many games. The turning point in his career came when he emerged as the highest run-getter in the inaugural UPT20 League where he scored 455 runs in 9 innings for Kanpur Superstars. It was his six-hitting ability that drew attention; he cracked 35 sixes, the most by any player, in the league. He also scored the fastest ton in the league off 47 balls while maintaining an overall strike rate of 188.80.

More recognition followed when he smashed 18 sixes in the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy, taking a place in the top 10 six-hitters in the tournament.

Misses trials, but attracts big, Sameer Rizvi

He got a trial in not one, but three IPL franchises, but he had to miss out as he was committed to playing for UP in the Men’s U-23 State A Trophy championship. He led UP to the title, scoring a 50-ball 84 in the final. He scored 454 runs and smashed 37 sixes in the tournament.

It was enough for franchises to notice and launch a bidding war for him in the IPL 2024 auction. But INR 8.40 crore was still way above expectations for Rizvi. “Even I kept wondering how did I get so much money, and why did CSK bid for me,” he was quoted as saying.

But, one can trust CSK to invest in youth while reinventing experienced players. For instance, Ravindra Jadeja joined CSK in 2012 at 24, while Ajinkya Rahane, 35, reinvented himself in the last IPL season when he was all but written off in the shortest format. These two players were the X factors for CSK in the winning campaign last season.

Rizvi’s expected role in CSK 

Coming to Rizvi, the right-handed big bitter can bat at any position from No 4 to No 7, can score at a brisk pace, and hits sixes at will. He can destroy any attack on his day, and switch the momentum in a matter of few balls. He is even capable of making big scores, and not just a few good quick cameos here and there.

His multi-dimensional batting skills would come in handy for CSK as they are eyeing him as a floater who can demolish attack in the middle overs with his big hitting as he can strike those big blows as and when needed. And if he bats until the death overs, he can just go for the kill and finish things off. A lot rests on Rizvi this season, not only to prove himself but also to repay the faith put in him by CSK.

A lot of youngsters have come through IPL and gone on to become successful cricketers, serving the national team. Jasprit Bumrah had an IPL contract from Mumbai Indians when he was just a newbie. And now, he is one of the world’s best bowlers across formats. The same goes for Ravindra Jadeja, who was part of the Rajasthan Royals’ winning squad in the 2008 IPL, and soon made his India debut, before going on to become one of the finest all-rounders India have ever produced. Rizvi does not need to look further than his state senior Rinku Singh who is making headlines for India's national team after a successful IPL for KKR last season. Hence, Rizvi should see the upcoming IPL 2024 as a stepping stone to a dream future as an India national cricketer.

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