Afghanistan speedster Naveen-ul-Haq did manage to grab the attention of cricket lovers and experts after he recently participated in the ICC Men's T20 World Cup. While the Afghans could not proceed to the semifinal stage, the 22-year-old bowler was one of the big positives for the team and did well with the new ball and also during the death overs.
In a recent interview, Naveen said that while he has learned a lot by participating in T20 leagues around the world, he wants to play in the Indian Premier League- which he rated as the best tournament in the world.
Playing in IPL remains a dream: Naveen
"Playing in different countries and leagues have certainly helped me grow as a bowler and player. Playing in CPL or in T20 Blast has enriched my experience and skill-set as a bowler, adapting to different conditions, players and tactical tweaks according to conditions and bowlers," the pacer told News9.
"But to play in IPL, the best tournament in the world, is a target. Who wouldn't want to play in the toughest and most challenging league in the world? I don't have any message for the franchises, but I am sure if I keep on improving as a bowler and perform for my country and other leagues on a consistent note then I will certainly find a spot there. But yes, playing in IPL remains a dream. Fingers crossed, I will get to fulfill that soon," he added.
Would be glad if I become 50 per cent of the bowler Bumrah is: Naveen
On his bowling action being compared to India's pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah, Naveen said that no one had pointed it out to him before the World event and he was not aware. However, when he saw it on the big screen he recognized that there were indeed some similarities. But he said that it was coincidental.
"It was during the match that I saw it on the big screen that our bowling action was being compared and I was like 'wow!', there is indeed some similarity. After that match, people started to ask me about it. I feel the bowling action comes naturally. But the similarity is completely a coincidence," the youngster said.
"I admire him (Bumrah) as a bowler. Such a cool and calm customer of the game. The way he carries himself even in the toughest of situations is a great example to learn from. I would be glad if I even become 50 per cent of the bowler he is. He is simply terrific," Naveen added.
Naveen ended the T20 World Cup with 5 wickets from 5 matches at an average of 27.00 and an economy of 9.00.