Meet Mukesh Kumar, the Bengal pacer Delhi Capitals bought went all out for at the IPL 2023 Auction

Bengal pacer Mukesh Kumar was bought by the Delhi Capitals for a whopping INR 5.5 crores at the IPL 2023 auction on Friday.
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Amidst all the Indian and overseas stalwarts who bagged major deals at the IPL 2023 mini-auction held in Kochi on Friday, December 23, uncapped seamer Mukesh Kumar made his presence felt, with an INR 5.5 crores deal with the Delhi Capitals.

Mukesh, who had his base price set at INR 20 Lakhs, got the initial bid from four-time IPL winners Chennai Super Kings, with the Capitals joining the race. CSK opted out at the INR 1 crore mark, with the Punjab Kings then joining in an intense battle with the Capitals. Eventually, DC managed to buy the right-arm quick at a staggering 27.5 times his base price.

Who is Mukesh Kumar? Why did Delhi Capitals spend INR 5.5 crores on the uncapped pacer?

Mukesh Kumar, born on October 12, 1993, Gopalganj, Bihar, is a right-arm medium pacer who represents Bengal in domestic cricket. He is one of the rare cricketers in the modern-day game to get an India call-up in white-ball cricket - during the home ODI series against South Africa earlier this year - despite not having played a single IPL game.

Having fallen in love with the game at a very young age, Mukesh decided to make a career in the sport.When 21, he was spotted by Ranadeb Bose, former Bengal pacer and bowling coach at a trials programme organised by the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB), back in 2014.

“It is all about the trials in my life. First one in Gopalganj, where I became the district’s best bowler and then in Kolkata, which changed my life,” Mukesh was quoted as saying by Indian Express earlier this season.

He would go on to make his first-class and List A debut in 2015 and play his first T20 the following year, and has been a constant presence for Bengal since. Mukesh has bagged 123 wickets at a highly impressive 21.49 with six five-wicket hauls in 33 first-class appearances till date. He has taken 26 and 25 wickets in List A and T20 cricket respectively, his economy in the latter reading 7.20.

As for his recent white-ball form, he managed nine wickets at 25.11 at the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2022-23, and six scalps at an economy of 7 in Bengal’s quarter-final run at the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2022.

Having shared the dressing room with the likes of Pragyan Ojha, Mohammed Shami, Ashok Dinda, Manoj Tiwary and Wriddhiman Saha at Bengal, Mukesh will now be in a star-studded Delhi Capitals dugout, featuring David Warner, Rishabh Pant, Mitchell Marsh and Anrich Nortje among others at the upcoming IPL 2023.


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