Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) on Sunday handed debut to Jammu and Kashmir pacer Umran Malik as they squared off against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in Dubai.
The 21-year-old bowler was roped in as a short-term COVID-19 replacement for T Natarajan, who had tested positive ahead of Hyderabad's encounter against Delhi Capitals on September 22.
Malik, who was a part of the Hyderabad contingent as a net bowler, has played one T20 and List A match for Jammu Kashmir and has picked a total of four wickets. He, however, will only be a part of the Hyderabad unit until Natarajan recovers and is allowed to join the team.
"Under the Regulation 6.1 (c), franchisees are allowed to sign a short-term replacement player until the original squad member is permitted to re-enter the team's bio-secure environment," an IPL release had said on Malik's addition to the Hyderabad squad.
Hyderabad skipper Kane Williamson described the right-arm paceman as an "exciting talent" after he won the toss and elected to bat first in Sharjah.
"It's an unfortunate position to be in but there's quite a bit to gain with growth of players, in difficult conditions, especially against a side like Kolkata. Umran Malik comes in for Sandeep Sharma just to improve the balance of the side. He's an exciting fast bowling talent," he said.
SRH are currently languishing at the bottom of the IPL 2021 points table with just two wins in 11 matches. They were officially knocked out of the playoffs race after suffering a six-wicket defeat against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on Thursday.