The 2022 season of Indian Premier League is concluded on a high note with Gujarat Titans clinching the titles in their debut season. It turned about a good season for players like Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav and Hardik Pandya who managed to find their form back and have made strong cases for themselves to get a place in the T20 World Cup squad. While looking at the flip side of it several star players looked completely off-colour this season, the list includes batting maestros like Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma.
Mayank Agarwal also had a tough season with the bat as the captaincy pressure took a toll on him. It was the first time when Mayank was appointed as a full-time captain of the franchise. He has led the Punjab side in the previous seasons when KL Rahul was absent but this time the team was built to support him in the quest to win the maiden title.
Former India spinner Harbhajan Singh feels that the poor form of Mayank was the most shocking moment for him of the season. The veteran offie said that Mayank looked suffocated as the captaincy put pressure on him.
“Mayank… I think if we talk about Agarwal, I thought to myself ‘What has happened to him? He is such a good player. After getting captaincy, I think it put pressure on him. From opening he went down to No. 4. He kept soaking everything. He looked suffocated. He should have been given freedom. He was under the radar and surely could have been a little better,” Harbhajan told SportsKeeda.
Mayank failed to lead the team from the front with the bat as he scored just 196 runs in 13 matches.
While Harbhajan also heaped praise on Royal Challengers Bangalore spinner Wanindu Hasaranga and called him the surprise package of the season.
“Wanindu Hasaranga became a match-winner after coming here. He was always a good bowler, we knew he was going to do well. But for me, he was the surprise package because the way he foxed the batters, he showed that he has the skills to succeed. It was fun to see him operate,” pointed out Harbhajan.
The Sri Lankan spinner fought hard in the Purple Cap battle but fell short of 1 wicket in the end as Yuvendra Chahal grabbed it with 27 scalps.