Hrithik Shokeen becomes first ever 'impact player'; replaces Hiten Dalal in SMAT 2022/23 and puts in impressive performance

Hrithik Shokeen made history at the ongoing Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2022/23, becoming the first ever ‘impact player’ in Delhi’s 71-run over Manipur on Tuesday.
Hrithik Shokeen and Hiten Dalal?width=963&height=541&resizemode=4
Shokeen returned 2/13 from his three-over spell.

Hrithik Shokeen became the first ever ‘impact player’ in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy history, when he replaced Hiten Dalal in an Elite Group B encounter played at the Jaipuria Vidyalaya Ground, Jaipur on Tuesday, October 11.

Shokeen replaced Dalal mid innings, after the latter had smashed 47 off 27, including seven fours and a six as Delhi finished 167/7. Shokeen dismissed Manipur skipper Langlonyamba Keishangbam and Johnson Singh, and eventually returned 2/13 from his three-over spell, helping his side limit the opposition to 96/7 in the allotted 20 overs to register a dominant seven-wicket win.

Manipur, meanwhile, had replaced Bishworjit Konthoujam with Ahmed Shah, the latter being the impact player. The former had returned 2/43 with his right-arm pace in the game's first half, while Ahmed Shah managed 12 off 18 with a six during the chase.

The BCCI had announced the tactical substitute rule to be used at the SMAT 2022/23 ahead of its start, with it being viewed as an experimental basis, and will be implemented at the IPL in future depending on its success.

As per the rules, the two teams will have four substitutes in their team sheet at the toss, and can use one of them as an ‘impact player’ during the game. The impact player can replace any player in the line-up, regardless if the original player in the starting XI has been dismissed or bowled his full-quota of overs. The replacement can be made at any point before the end of the 14th over of either innings.

"With the ever-growing popularity of T20 cricket, it is imperative that we look at introducing new dimensions which will make this format more attractive and interesting not only for our viewers but also the participating teams from a strategic viewpoint," BCCI had said in an official statement while introducing the rule last month. 

"The BCCI would like to introduce the concept of 'IMPACT PLAYER' wherein participating teams could replace one member of its playing XI during a T20 match based on the context of the game."