ATUL KUMAR MAURYA | 26th February 2021

New Zealand have produced a plethora of quality all-rounders for a long time now. From Sir Richard Hadlee, Daniel Vettori, Chris Cairns, Jacob Oram and Scott Styris to the likes of James Franklin, Jimmy Neesham, Corey Anderson and Grant Elliot. The list goes on and on. And the newest and a promising addition to the list is the 6’8”, 26-year old, Kyle Jamieson who stands out for much more than his stature that would make him fit right in and amongst the NBA. Jamieson has been a revelation in his short international cricketing career till date and shows both promise and potential to become one of the world’s best.

The towering fast bowler was the part of the Kiwi Under-19s setup in 2014 but it was his time in the Canterbury Kings colors when the hype got real. Jamieson took 6 wickets for a mere 7 runs against the Auckland Aces in his full quota of 4 overs. From that day forward, he took centerstage and announced himself like not many could even in their wildest dreams.

Jamieson was the leading wicket taker in that year’s domestic T20 tournament as well with 22 scalps in 10 matches. For someone who started as a batting all-rounder and then was converted into a bowling all-rounder, the numbers were staggering. The rangy customer has since moved to his hometown team Auckland Aces, the one he wreaked havoc with and has never looked back.

The Kiwi made his international debut against India in both the ODI and Test formats. And on his white ball debut especially, Jamieson made sure first impressions last. Chipping in with a valuable contribution of 25 runs with the bat and 2 wickets with the ball, Jamieson or ‘Killa’ as he’s referred to was adjudged the Player of the Match in his debut game. Some accolade that is on your first outing.

A debut for the ages

And in the Test series against India, he was equally impressive. Jamieson took a 4-fer in the first innings of the 1st test and his first 5-fer in the first innings of the second test. And to add to that, he was handy with the bat as well, scoring twice in the 40s for the team. After a brilliant showing against India, Kyle Jamieson’s a name that one must ignore at their own peril.

Since then, the pacer has played 4 more Test matches, two each against both West Indies and Pakistan and has been superb to say the least. Currently, he averages 13.27 with the ball and has 36 wickets in the 6 tests he has played. With the bat, an average of 56.50 is sensational but the strike rate of 70 is indicative of a rounded batsman; someone who can up the ante while still notching up the numbers.

But if his international white ball numbers are taken into consideration, Jamieson hasn’t fared as well as he has done with the red ball. Then again, it is extremely early in his career to label him as entirely a red ball specialist. And with the kind of performances he put in both the Plunkett Shield and Super Smash T20 cup, the future looks even brighter for the Kiwi pacer.

Jamieson is the kind of bowler who generates a lot of pace from the pitch, just because of his sheer height. And with that pace, he generates a wicked bounce from the surface as well. And he has so much more to his armory apart from the short stuff.

The Kiwi pacer has the ability to move the ball both ways when he bowls fuller lengths and his in-swingers are the ones to watch. The Royal Challengers Bangalore’s latest Rs. 15 crore acquisition also has the ability to seam the ball of the pitch which again makes him a very handy customer in conditions which do not support swing bowling as a whole.

The ball just jags back in sharply after pitching when he goes for the in-seaming deliveries. All in all, he’s a complete bowling package. As far as his batting goes, it seems he has a sensible head on his shoulders. Jamieson has the ability to use the long handle to great effect and has a good batting technique to go with it as well. So, for all the hype circling around the talisman, he has the skills to show for it.

Jamieson’s technique is second to none

Before the IPL 2021 auction, Jamieson was a name who was guaranteed to demand the big bucks. And for a whopping 15 crore Indian rupees, which roughly estimates to 2.82 million New Zealand dollars, it isn’t a surprise to see RCB going all in for the fact such a rounded all-rounded is a rare find. While the pressure comes with the price tag, the Kiwi himself hasn’t let things get to him.

“To be fair, I don’t think a whole lot changes to me. I accept that there will be expectations but that’s been the case the whole time I’ve played. When you play your first one-day game, first Test and different series, there’s always expectation but it’s probably more externally than it is with me. For me, it’s about how can I learn, how can I grow and focusing on trying to do the job for the team at that time.”

Kyle Jamieson still has a lot to prove in the circuit, especially in white ball cricket. But with the head he has on his shoulders and all the ability in the world, the only way is up.

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