Player of the Match: Amla dazzles in a different format

Hashim Amla’s 38-ball 58 against a mighty Royal Challengers Bangalore on Monday proved that the South African batting mainstay has learnt the art of living in T20 as well.

Hashim Amla goes for a big one against Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Holkar Stadium in Indore on Monday.   -  AFP

Ideally, it’s not a format tailor-made for him. But Hashim Amla has made it a point to fit into it, slowly but steadily. And, his 38-ball 58 against a mighty Royal Challengers Bangalore on Monday proved that the South African batting mainstay has learnt the art of living in T20 as well!

After a late strike by AB de Villers put the Bangalore outfit in a competitive position, all Punjab required was a steady opening, and a vastly experienced Amla did just that, pairing with Manan Vohra. While he kept the scoreboard ticking, and allowed his Indian opener to go for a few shots, the acceleration changed after Vohra’s dismissal.

That was the crucial phase, which eventually changed the course of the game. It saw a calm and cool man from South Africa guiding his team to an easy victory, putting behind talks that Amla is best suited for Tests. It was a test of character for him as well, and he came out all guns blazing.

It’s not easy to shrug off a Test specialist tag, especially in unknown conditions. But if the name is Amla, be ready for such surprises!