Perhaps by now it’s clear to all that the Mumbai Indians had a disastrous IPL, a series so uttterly disappointing that they would like to forget as soon as possible. However, there is something that did offer a glimer of hope to the Mumbai Indians: Tim David. And maybe, one can’t help but wonder what may have happened if the Mumbai franchise would’ve offered David more chances than he was afforded; is it something they will think about harder now that the tournament of their treachery is over or a fact that upon regretting, they’ll rue more in the days to come.
When Tim David sealed the game against the Delhi Capitals with a smashing cameo, it was evident that Mumbai Indians made a grave mistake by not selecting him for the initial games. However, whatever appearances the destructive Singapore Cricketer got for his Mumbai contingent, he made some major contributions. After the end of the IPL, his stocks in International Cricket and especially, Franchise Cricket, are on the rise and perhaps considerably so.
But how did the Tim David story unfold; where he it begin and what ups and downs did this easy going cricketer face before he presented a postcard of destruction to the Indian cricket viewers?
Tim David was born to Australian Parents in Singapore, where they had moved for job opportunities. His family though returned to Australia in the late 90s due to financial crisis that, at that time, had hit Asia. But when he decided that he wanted to make career in Cricket, he had two option. First, to struggle and try to play for Australia and second, to play for Singapore.
This is precisely where things could’ve been tricky. While he could have entered this fray easily, the eventualities of doing so was the catch. And how?
For the chances of playing constantly were too far and few as the team played a few matches here and there.
Hence, Tim David opted for the latter.
And that is where things became interesting for the towering hitter of sixes.
In 2019, he played his first international match for Singapore and since then, he simply hasn’t looked back.
In 14 matches with Singapore, he amassed 558 runs. To some it would seem- just about okay. Which is where, one needs to address the stat closely; during his time in the heartening South East Asian land, he batted at a remarkable average of 46.50.
Would you consider this bad for someone who was a tad bit new to the international waters?
Implicit, though, in the runs he scored for a country avidly described as the Tiger Asian economy was his strike rate.
At 158.52, this was the sort of batting return that would impress anyone-whether Muscle-Russell as he’s called, Pollard, the enigmatic AB or even, the Universe Boss Gayle himself.
There are some who manage a high average but not necessarily a strikingly good looking strike rate. Tim David, on his part, offered a clear lethal combination.
It was at the behest of his batting belligerence that Tim David was immediately picked up by the different T20 franchises.
And that’s how he’d get into a ‘League’, which given the way he is playing at the moment, he may come to rule one day.
What Mumbai should have capitalised on, which is his explosive T20 hitting talent, was precisely the very thing that arrested the attention of several leagues in the game’s shortest firmament, which brought the right-hander to everyone’s attention.
His performances in the franchise cricket have been very impressive with both average and strike rate scaling north. In the 2021-22 Big Bash League (in Australia), he scored 218 runs with an unbelieve s/r of 163.9 and continued the form in Pakistan Super league (PSL), where he amassed 221 runs at an average of 55.25 not to forget- a strike rate of 206.54.
Read that again: 206.5.
This was inarguably of the main reasons why Tim David was sold like some show stopping sports car in a salubrious saloon.
Think of the IPL Auctions earlier this year. The franchises were aiming to grab someone, who had the ability to go big towards the end of the innings. Ultimately, Mumbai Indians, who we saw didn’t quite utilise him as well as they should, acquired the lanky bat for a vast sum of 8.5 Crore Indian Rupees.
Do the math and that’s US 1.1 Million Dollars.
The Mumbai Indians, by the end of the tournament, were well aware that they had done the right thing to bid for the 6″5 player. And while here was a cricketer whose best days are ahead of him, perhaps Rohit and company also accepted a fact with a grain of salt that they had underutilised him.
Though, at the same time, make no mistake: for Tim David knows that he mustn’t take things lightly; and that one explosive IPL season, wherein he produced 186 runs off just 86 deliveries, is his entry point into the IPL.
What’ll likely ensure that he hangs around long will be consistent fireworks in the seasons that lie ahead.
-with contributions from Dev Tyagi