Ngidi opens up about the IPL auction and why he became a bowler

Lungi Ngidi Chennai Super Kings Indian Premier League IPL cricket

Lungi Ngidi: “I will be playing with Dhoni, which is a dream come true for any young cricketer”

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

South Africa pace bowler Lungi Ngidi has admitted that he was shocked when he was sold to the Chennai Super Kings at the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction last month.

Ngidi, who was purchased for his base price of INR 50 lakhs, made his presence felt during the recently concluded Test series against India as he took nine wickets in two Tests at an average of 17.22.

He was also South Africa’s highest wicket-taker in the ODI series that followed as he claimed eight wickets at an average of 25.50.

When asked if he expected to be bought by any of the IPL franchises, the 21-year-old told Live Mint: “No, I didn’t (laughs). I knew I had a good T20 domestic series and my first few international T20 games had gone well. I was obviously hoping to be picked up (in the players’ auction) and was nervous about it too.

“I didn’t watch because we were playing a Test match. After the game, I checked my phone and everybody was congratulating me. I asked “what for” and then I realized I had been picked up by CSK.

“I have been to India before with the South Africa Under-19 team, but the IPL feels like a bigger stage. I will be playing with Dhoni, which is a dream come true for any young cricketer.”

Meanwhile, Ngidi revealed that he decided to become a fast bowler since his parents could not afford to buy him cricket equipment, including batting gear.

“My parents couldn’t afford to buy me cricket kits,” the Durban native admitted. “Even when I went for trials and was selected for district competitions, I never had batting equipment.

“I saw that as an opportunity to become a bowler. It just happened that way, pushing me towards becoming a fast bowler.”

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