Hetmyer Watch RCB, What You Are Missing > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - Hetmyer shows RCB what they were missing

Shimron Hetmyer had scores of 0, 5, 9, 1 in his first four outings before being dropped

The world had seen Shimron Hetmyer, the IPL hadn't. Not the best of him anyway. Not even vague sightings of the "once-in-a-generation cricketer" that former West Indies coach Stuart Law had foreseen in a Wisden Cricket Weekly Podcast earlier this year.

RCB's second-most expensive buy at the auctions this season, at INR 4.2 crores, was hastily cast aside on the benches following scores of 0, 5, 9, 1 in his first four outings. Apparently, the management had seen enough to form their opinion, and it was a pretty damning one as the left-hander wasn't considered even when a spot had opened up after the departure of Moeen Ali. RCB instead chose to go with just three overseas players in their previous match against Rajasthan Royals.

On Saturday night though, brought back from the cold for the Chinnaswamy's season finale, Hetmyer brought forth all the untapped potential to show his team what they'd been missing all along.

The Royal Challengers, chasing 176, had lost Parthiv Patel, Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers - their top three run-getters of the tournament - with the score at 20. It was a situation that Kohli would later go on to describe as a chance for "someone else to show what they're made of". But that was easier said than done.

After all, Sunrisers were on the hunt for a spot in the playoffs and there couldn't have been a better opportunity to exploit. So, on came Rashid Khan in the fifth over itself, giving way to a battle that would shape the outcome of the contest.

Two teammates from the CPL, playing for Guyana Amazon Warriors, going at it for a lot more than bragging rights. And their first exchanges were pretty much even-stevens. If Rashid beat Hetmyer with a googly off his first legitimate delivery, Hetmyer got his own back with a hammer-blow over wide long-on later in the over. In between, they flashed knowing smiles at each other. This was on.

Rashid may not have had the rewards in terms of wickets this year, but he's remained very economical, going at a rate of just 6.46. Batsmen have adopted the approach of guarding their wickets when he's in operation. Not Hetmyer, who was intent on hitting everything as hard as possible, with every mis-hit seen as a failure to be admonished.

As the contest between the two progressed, the smile on Rashid's face vanished. A clear winner had emerged. Over the course of the 15 balls bowled, Hetmyer smashed 32 runs, including four sixes - the third one bringing up his maiden IPL fifty, which was celebrated with a massive fist-pump and a salute to the crowd. Rashid had tried everything. When his full length leg-breaks - all the five kinds of them - were met with disdainful swipes over midwicket, he'd gone for shorter and wider googlies. He even bowled from round the wicket at one point, something which he rarely does. None of it worked. It proved to be the match-up where the game was won and lost as SRH couldn't come up with much else after their main weapon was neutralized.

Rashid did eventually get his man, but only when the target was a mere 12 runs away. In that time, the packed house in Bangalore had seen enough of a glimpse into what the future possibly had in store, and they liked it, showering a roaring applause for Hetmyer on the way back.

This was ball-striking of the kind that has seen many former players swear by the potential of the 22-year-old from Guyana. A lovely batswing that goes all the way back with the flourish, the gift of timing, and minimal uncomplicated footwork. It's a formula that's brought him a good deal of success in his young limited-overs international career, not to mention how he's set the Caribbean Premier League on fire multiple times. The IPL can be a different beast though, and this experience will only help him grow into a better cricketer.

"The start was a bit tough for me. Getting used to the environment and getting used to the IPL. Sometimes it gets in your head [the price tag], but it's about clearing your mind and trying to execute. RCB is a fantastic team, a fantastic franchise. I've learnt a lot from AB, Virat, and even the coaches and the other players around. I'm trying to take my game one step at a time and just trying to move up in whatever way I possibly can," Hetmyer signed off at the post-match presentation.

Live Home Series
Player Schedule
Points Table Cricket Rankings
Cricket Clothing Cricket Equipment
Cricinfo Apps Download