In small towns, there are those who dream big and go all the way with their fearless attitude. And Punjab Kings debutant Harpreet Brar is a small town story. He made his first appearance for the franchise in IPL 2021 memorable as he dismissed Virat Kohli and Glenn Maxwell in consecutive deliveries before cleaning up AB de Villiers.
Brar was adjudged the man-of-the-match for making light work of the formidable RCB batting line-up and returning figures of 3/19 in his stipulated 4 overs. He then admitted that he will remember the prized scalp of India and RCB captain Virat Kohli for years to come.
"My first IPL wicket was Kohli Paaji's wicket and that was very special," Brar said at the post-match interview.
So, what do we know about Brar -- the overnight Punjab Kings hero.
Early days and domestic career
Brar was born in the Moga district of Punjab on September 15, 1995. He would start playing for Roopar in the Punjab inter-district competitions and got noticed for regularly being among the top wicket-takers.
His left-arm spin bowling can be likened to that of India and CSK all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja's as it goes straight into the wicket after pitching to deceive the batsman for turn.
Brar, however, then moved to play in Mohali after being insisted by Gurkeerat Singh Mann. He has shone for the Punjab U-23 team as the 6 feet two inches tall cricketer has picked up 18 wickets and scored 206 runs from five matches thus far.
Tough road to IPL
Despite his consistency for the youth teams, Brar failed to break into an IPL side for seven years in a row. He would appear for four trials before finally being picked up for Punjab Kings (erstwhile Kings XI Punjab) for a sum of INR 20 lakh.
The 25-year-old, however, has struggled to find a place consistently in the Punjab Kings setup as he played two matches in IPL 2019 and a solitary game in the succeeding season.
His performance against RCB on Friday, however, is bound to act as a stepping stone in his career.
Yuvraj Singh fan
Brar can hit a few with the bat as well. He has a strike rate of over 155 and idolizes former India all-rounder and Punjab captain Yuvraj Singh.
The Punjab cricketer had, in fact, struck a 12-ball 20 against Delhi Capitals on his IPL debut but failed to help his side get over the line. He also boasts of hitting five sixes in an over at club level.
And after all the patience and perseverance, it looks like the stage is set for Brar, to weave his magic on a consistent basis in the lucrative tournament.