Riyan Parag

Riyan Parag has finally come of age. The Guwahati-based cricketer has shown maturity both on and off the field. He played according to the situation and helped Rajasthan Royals win their matches in this IPL.

Riyan Parag is now jointly leading the tally of highest scorers with Virat Kohli.

What has changed that he is performing so well this season?

“Nothing has changed, to be honest. I have simplified things instead of trying to do many things,” Riyan said after the match.

“Earlier, I used to think about it (not performing) too much and tried to do different things. But it didn’t work out. This year, the goal was simple…watch the ball and hit.”

In the first match of this season, Riyan scored 43 against Lucknow Super Giants, a majestic 84 not out against Delhi Capitals and now a superb unbeaten 54. Riyan has scored 181 runs in the 3 matches so far at a strike rate of 160.18 and an impressive average of 181.

In the match against Delhi, the Royals were reeling at 36 for 3 with their top three batters out. Riyan anchored one end securely and steered his team to 108/4 by the 15th over. Subsequently, he unleashed an onslaught, propelling the team to a formidable total of 185/5. Even against Mumbai, Riyan played some of the fantastic shots.

Riyan Parag thinks domestic cricket has helped him to prepare to face this kind of situation where he rescued teams almost single-handedly.

“I have said it before, when I play domestic (cricket) this is the exact type of situation I go in to bat. When Jos (Buttler) bhai got out, and Ash (R Ashwin) bhai got out a little after, I was like, ‘okay, this is what I do. This is what I’ve been doing for the last six months playing domestic cricket. So it was pretty simple to calculate everything,” he explained.

In the domestic circuit, Assam reached the semifinal of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy in 2023-24. The team was mostly dependent on Riyan. He scored 510 runs in 10 matches to emerge as the highest run-getter in the tournament. His average was 85 and the strike rate was 182.79.

And thus came the transformation. He also handled the off-field trolls in a better way.

“I’ve had three-four years of not performing at all, or even performing if it’s one match a season. You really go back to the hotel room and think to yourself that when you know you can do something and it’s not coming, the performances are not coming, you get back to the drawing board,” Riyan said.

“I tried finding what was wrong and I figured out that I was not practising at this level enough. So I went back after the (2023) season and practised very hard. And I think that’s showing now. I practised these types of balls, and these types of scenarios a lot. Hence the performances.”

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