With Indian Premier League (IPL) set to start on April 7, Kashmir's new cricket sensation Manzoor Dar (Pandav) who was grabbed by Kings-XI Punjab in players auction has shifted his focus on getting into full rhythm. .
The season 11 of IPL-2018 is set to be played over 51 days, across nine venues, between April 7th and May 27th. Kings XI Punjab will kick-start their campaign when they play Delhi Daredevils on the April 8.
Manzoor Pandav who is back home after being part of the J&K Vijay Hazare Trophy is training hard these days in Srinagar. He has shifted his focus on achieving fitness and also is working in nets. Pandav is only third ever player from Kashmir to be part of the IPL after Mohammad Mudhasir and international cricket star of Kashmir, Parvez Rasool. While Mudhasir was part of development squad and never played A match, Pandav was bagged by Kings XI Punjab in auction for the bid of Rupees, 20 Lakhs.
The preparatory training camp of the Kings-XI is likely to start from March 10 and players may start to join team in Mohali on March 4.
"There is no official word yet and about the start of the training camp. But tentatively team has sent a message to all players to reach Mohali on March 4 for some official work before start of the camp," Pandav said.
Manzoor who hails from Sumbal area of Bandipora is currently stationed in Srinagar with focus on his training and achieving peak fitness.
"IPL over the years has set high standards as for as fitness is considered. With no available facilities in my home town I have shifted my base till I join Kings-XI camp to Srinagar. I am focusing on running, cardio, strength training apart from regular cricket training," he said.
Pandav is known for his power hitting and scoring quickly in domestic cricket arena of the J&K. He also contributed with his all round ability in the three matches that J&K won the Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy this year.
"Hitting sixes comes to me naturally with the time this tag of power hitter got attached with me. I have played almost in every part of the State apart from few outside States. I have performed well in every arena but IPL would be totally different," he said.
Though Pandav is Kashmiri power hitter but in Kings-XI Punjab squad there are world class power hitters like Chris Gayle, David Miller, Yuvraj Singh and Aaron Finch.
"It will be dream come to true to in same team that has legends in it. I will to try to learn the art of big hitting from stars like Chris Gayle and Yuvraj Singh for the improvement of my game," he added.