IPL 2022: Dhoni's key lesson to 1st call from Akash Ambani - MI's Ishan Kishan shares journey so far
From his Vijay Hazare days and 2018 IPL auction to his debut for India and more, Mumbai Indians' Ishan Kishan has opened up about his cricketing journey on Gaurav Kapoor's Breakfast with Champions.
Team India and Mumbai Indians wicketkeeper-batter Ishan Kishan is a household name in the country. Fondly known as 'Chhota Dynamite', the explosive left-handed batter has been rising ever since he lit the Indian Premier League (IPL) with his skills with both the bat and the gloves.
The IPL 2022 mega auction was not the first time the Mumbai Indians had to break the bank to rope in the star batter. In 2018, after raising his stocks at the now-defunct Gujarat Lions, the Rohit Sharma-led side lapped up the Indian southpaw for Rs 6.20 crore. He became the highest run-scorer for the Mumbai franchise in IPL 2020, with 516 runs from 14 matches and won the most sixes award of the season.
Ishan Kishan's splendid display at the T20 league earned him a call in the national team. And in this year's IPL mega auction, he was bought by the Mumbai Indians for ₹15.25 crores, making him the second-most expensive Indian player at the auction, behind Yuvraj Singh. The road, however, has not been an easy one for the star cricketer.
From his childhood struggles and lessons learnt from 2011 World Cup-winning skipper MS Dhoni to Akash Amabi's first call after the IPL 2018 auction and the feeling of representing the country at an international level - Ishan Kishan opened up about all this and more on 'Breakfast with Champions', hosted by Gaurav Kapoor. Here's a look at some interesting things he revealed during the chat show:
On lesson learnt from MS Dhoni
Ishan Kishan's roots, his wicketkeeping skill and his swashbuckling batting style have often drawn comparisons with the CSK icon. Talking about his experience with the legendary Indian skipper so far, Ishan also revealed an important lesson he had learnt during a Vijay Hazare tournament.
"So, from what we've observed about wicketkeeping, our hands move in a particular way when there's an edge. But he taught me that my movement should only be this much," said Kishan swinging his hands in a slow-paced action to show the lesson taught by Dhoni.
"This should be your movement. Not just your wrist but your hand should swing in a particular way. Once this becomes a habit, you'll be able to catch even the thick edges," the wicketkeeping-batter added.
"But more than keeping, I keep trying to figure out how his (Dhoni's) mind works. You won't believe in one of the IPL matches, what stressed me out the most... I was playing well and hitting the bowlers... But then Dhoni bhai went and spoke to the bowler, which I couldn't hear. He spoke to Imran Tahir. And in my head, I am wondering what Dhoni bhai has told him. I don't know what happened, but there was a half-volley ball... I tried to drive it and got caught at short third man. To date, I haven't figured out how a batter trying to drive a spinner gets caught at short third man," the Mumbai Indians star added.
About his equation with MI captain Rohit Sharma
When asked about Rohit Sharma as a captain, the star player said the Hitman is 'chilled' but added that his mind is always racing while on the field. "When he says a batter will hit in a certain area, that usually happens. The ball will go where he predicted it would," revealed Ishan while sharing one such incident.
Praising the current Indian team skipper, Ishan Kishan stated, "The best thing about Rohit Bhai is that he'll curse at you in the match, but once it is done, he will say, 'Don't take what I said seriously.' It happens in the match."
On his equation with batting icon Virat Kohli
After talking about his fun-loving rapport with Rohit Sharma, Ishan Kishan was asked if he could do something similar with former Indian skipper Virat Kohli. "No, I have never done that. We haven't spent so much time together, and I don't have that bond where I can make fun of him. If I do say something, he'll think I am taking liberties."
On how his family reacted to his 2018 IPL bid
Speaking on the show 'Breakfast with Champions', Kishan recalled his family's reaction after the mega auction of the IPL 2018. "I was chilled out. It was my auction. I should be stressed about it. I went to play football with my friends. When the auction ended, I got a call from Monu Bhai. He is telling me what all happened at the auction. I was like, it's good I have been sold for good money. I should go home and meet everyone," Ishan Kishan said.
"I went home and saw that mom is on the call, cheeks red and a call. I saw that dad wasn't even there. I asked where dad was? She said, 'He has gone to the hospital to check his BP'. I am thinking, 'what has happened to my family?' (Laughs)," added Kishan, who joined Mumbai Indians for INR 15.25 crore for IPL 2022.
Meanwhile, the youngster also revealed how he felt when he received a call from Mukesh Ambani's son, Akash. "The first time I was sold, I got a call from Akash Bhai. It was such a huge thing for me to get a call from Akash Ambani. I was going crazy calling all my friends, family, everyone... telling them Akash Bhaiya called me. They asked, 'Who Akash' and I said, 'Akash Ambani'," revealed the Mumbai Indians star.
On getting stumped in front of batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar in Mumbai Indians' dressing room
Ishan Kishan's reaction to spotting the legendary Sachin Tendulkar in Mumbai Indians' dressing room had gone viral during last year's IPL season.
Revealing the story behind it, he said, "So that time, Mohsin (Khan) and Yudhvir (Singh) were in the team, and we were all together. We'd go everywhere together, and because I had extra stuff, I'd ask them to help me carry it. I was on my phone listening to music, and when I looked up, they had all disappeared. So, I was angry and had to carry everything to the dressing room myself. As soon as I entered, I spotted him and cursed him."
"Then I see Mohsin was gesturing to me like this (a corner of the eye movement). I was wondering why he's doing that. I looked the other way, and Sachin paaji was sitting there. I immediately removed my shades and thought, 'How could I have used such foul language in front of Sachin paaji'. I quickly removed my air-pods and said, 'Good afternoon, Sir'. He replied, 'Good afternoon' and asked, 'How are you?'. 'Great Sir,' I replied," revealed Ishan Kishan.
On his debut for Team India, his family's reaction and coach Rahul Dravid
Recalling the moment when he got the call to play for the country, Ishan said, "Everyone was crying. Who would I talk to on the phone? When I got selected for the Indian team, the first person I called was my mom. She was sobbing away. I said, 'Okay, mom, we'll talk later'. She then gave the phone to my dad... Then I heard even my dad was getting all emotional. I was like, 'Why are you also crying?'. He said, 'You won't understand son. It happens.'... I told everyone we'll speak after three days once everyone is back to their normal self."
"But I get it. They've seen their son work so hard, and finally, when he gets his reward, obviously, they'll be happy. They were like mad. They were only crying," the sensational batter added.
Talking about his first ball on his international debut against England last year, Ishan Kishan revealed that Kohli had asked him to smash Jofra Archer for a six, and he felt it was the right thing to do. "I was just happy about that... International, first ball boundary, Archer."
"People think it's the first ball of international cricket, so he will play it safe... I was thinking, 'Nopes, times have changed'. Got to go big. Straight up!" Ishan added.
Opening up about how it feels like to share the dressing room with the legendary Rahul Dravid as a coach, Ishan Kishan said, "So many times when Rahul sir chills with us, and he feels that the mood is going to become very upbeat, he will suddenly leave and sit with the video analyst."