Haseeb Hameed: Here to stay

haseeb-hameed

The 19-year-old made scores of 31 and 82 – the highest Test score by a teenager for England – on debut in the first Test against India in Rajkot, which ended in a draw.

Hameed was well supported in the crowd, with his parents and siblings travelling out to see the Lancashire opener realise a long-held dream to play for the Three Lions.

From his first moment at the crease, it was clear that Hameed has the necessary skills to not only survive in Test cricket, but become a consistent and solid opener in years to come.

He played the ball with soft hands and didn’t feel the need to slash or swing at the ball at will as most players on debut would have trying to get off the mark or just get bat on ball.

And in a country where spin is king, Hameed showed he can more than handle the threat of Ravichandaran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Amit Mishra.

England coach Trevor Bayliss is usually a reserved man and doesn’t like to heap premature praise on upcoming players.

But even the Australian couldn’t help but be impressed by Hameed, “Without wanting to put too much pressure on him, the signs are good,” Bayliss said. “For one so young, 19, his composure is very good.

“He knows how his game works – something that players years in advance of him would like to have, I think,” Bayliss said speaking with Sky Sports News.

“He’s been with the squad for about six weeks, but it feels like he’s been here for two or three years – he’s got that type of a personality.

“He’s one of those batters, a little bit like a Kumar Sangakkara, who just loves batting – whether it’s in the nets, having throwdowns or with a tennis ball in the changing room. He just loves to have a bat in his hand.”

There will be times when Hameed may find himself in a bit of a pickle, struggling for form and with bowlers becoming more wise to his weaknesses.

But the best players have weathered the storms and have gone on to prove that any loss of form is just temporary.

Hameed’s saving grace and the reason why ex players are left salivating at his talent is his natural ability and technique.

Long may he continue to be a mainstay at the top of the order.

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