Mohammad Kaif has praised Tilak Varma for his impressive stroke play and compared his helicopter shot to that of MS Dhoni. Varma’s unbeaten 84 off just 46 balls helped Mumbai Indians set a target of 172 for the Royal Challengers Bangalore in their IPL 2023 match on April 2 in Bengaluru.
However, despite Varma’s valiant efforts, RCB secured a dominant eight-wicket victory with 22 deliveries to spare.
Mohammad Kaif spoke highly of Tilak Varma’s well-rounded skillset and expressed admiration for his use of the helicopter shot during a post-match analysis on Star Sports.
Despite Mumbai Indians’ defeat in the IPL 2023 match against Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kaif singled out Varma’s impressive performance, highlighting his ability to play a variety of shots and execute them effectively.
“Leg side is his strong suit. He uses his bottom hand but he makes room as well, hits sixes straight down the ground and plays the scoop shot. So it is not that he can only score on the leg side. The helicopter shot – if you watch it through a mirror, you will feel it is MS Dhoni because you will see him as a right-hander there,” said the former Indian cricketer.
Mohammad Kaif also noted that Tilak Varma had shone during Mumbai Indians’ lacklustre performance in the previous season of IPL, and had carried that form into the team’s opening match of IPL 2023. Despite Mumbai Indians’ loss to Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kaif believed that Varma’s innings would be a source of encouragement for the team going forward.
Tilak Varma had a phenomenal season in IPL 2022, scoring 397 runs in 14 games at a strike rate of 131.02. His highest score was 61, which he surpassed with his unbeaten knock of 84 runs in the first game of IPL 2023.