IPL 10

IPL 10: Sunrisers Hyderabad’s Shikhar Dhawan is quietly knocking on India’s door

The 31-year-old is the sixth highest run-scorer in the IPL this year, with a highest total of 70 scored against the Delhi Daredevils.

Many names have emerged from the Sunrisers Hyderabad’s squad this IPL season. From the skipper, David Warner, to Rashid Khan, Yuvraj Singh, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, and Ashish Nehra, there has been no dearth of players who have done their bit in pushing the defending champions to the second place in the points table.

But, until his performance against the Delhi Daredevils on Wednesday, there was no mention whatsoever of Shikhar Dhawan. Furthermore, Warner scoring the bulk of runs at the top of the order also meant that his opening partner, and his fellow southpaw went completely under the radar.

Coincidentally then, Dhawan’s (eventual) rise to the thick of things came about because of Warner after the Australian lost his wicket – for once – cheaply in the Sunrisers’ match against the Daredevils. Dhawan lingered on at the field for almost the entirety of the 20-over count, patiently composing a 70-run knock off 50 runs. It the Delhi native’s first half-century in this year’s IPL, and his highest score in the six matches he has played in the tournament this far.

Opening up of opportunities

Statistically, thanks to this one knock, Dhawan also bettered his previous year’s IPL record averaging around 34.1 runs in these six matches at an aggregate total of 205 runs. In comparison, the 31-year-old had finished the 2016 season at an average of around 38.5, with a total of 501 runs scored across the 17 matches played that year.

Aside of statistical nitty-gritty, what has been most impressive about Dhawan this year around has been the maturity with which he has been playing, and even that has been largely obscured, or conveniently brushed aside.

Where in the past Dhawan’s flamboyance often had him throwing his wicket away needlessly while trying to take unnecessary risks, he’s taken a newer initiative in trying to add to his contributions on the field by being patient. And while it has not worked every time he has taken the field, it’s yielded some notable results too.

Dhawan’s allowing of Kane Williamson to take control of the proceedings despite the latter being the new batsman in on Tuesday struck out noticeably. But it wasn’t the first time that Dhawan has had given his partner room to play aggressively, even as he has maintained the pace of the innings from the other end, unburdened by pressure on his shoulders. That Warner has then emerged as the top run-getter in the league this year is then also because of the way the Sunrisers’ opening pair has functioned.

With the current context of cricket’s outreach avenues, the IPL – irrespective, and in spite, of its numerous debacles – holds quite a fine distinction in helping several players reassert their patchy form, even bringing them back to prominence. Not in the tournament and for their particular team alone, but in the international cricketing stages as well.

For Dhawan, who has had an extended length of inconsistencies of his own, this could be his chance to get back to donning the national colours again. Starting with the shortest format, all the way back up to the Test whites.

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Young Indians now like their traditional food with a twist

Indian food with international influences is here to stay.

With twenty-nine states and over 50 ethnic groups, India’s diversity is mind-boggling to most foreigners. This diversity manifests itself across areas from clothing to art and especially to food. With globalisation, growth of international travel and availability of international ingredients, the culinary diversity of India has become progressively richer.

New trends in food are continuously introduced to the Indian palate and are mainly driven by the demands of generation Y. Take the example of schezwan idlis and dosas. These traditional South Indian snacks have been completely transformed by simply adding schezwan sauce to them – creating a dish that is distinctly Indian, but with an international twist. We also have the traditional thepla transformed into thepla tacos – combining the culinary flavours of India and Mexico! And cous cous and quinoa upma – where niche global ingredients are being used to recreate a beloved local dish. Millennials want a true fusion of foreign flavours and ingredients with Indian dishes to create something both Indian and international.

So, what is driving these changes? Is it just the growing need for versatility in the culinary experiences of millennials? Or is it greater exposure to varied cultures and their food habits? It’s a mix of both. Research points to the rising trend to seek out new cuisines that are not only healthy, but are also different and inspired by international flavours.

The global food trend of ‘deconstruction’ where a food item is broken down into its component flavours and then reconstructed using completely different ingredients is also catching on for Indian food. Restaurants like Masala Library (Mumbai), Farzi Café (Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru) and Pink Poppadum (Bengaluru) are pushing the boundaries of what traditional Indian food means. Things like a kulcha pizza, dal chaawal cutlet and chutney foam are no longer inconceivable. Food outlets that stock exotic ingredients and brands that sell traditional Indian packaged snacks in entirely new flavours are also becoming more common across cities.

When it comes to the flavours themselves, some have been embraced more than others. Schezwan sauce, as we’ve mentioned, is now so popular that it is sometimes even served with traditional chakna at Indian bars. Our fascination with the spicy red sauce is however slowly being challenged by other flavours. Wasabi introduced to Indian foodies in Japanese restaurants has become a hit among spice loving Indians with its unique kick. Peri Peri, known both for its heat and tanginess, on the other hand was popularised by the famous UK chain Nandos. And finally, there is the barbeque flavour – the condiment has been a big part of India’s love for American fast food.

Another Indian snack that has been infused with international flavours is the beloved aloo bhujia. While the traditional gram-flour bhujia was first produced in 1877 in the princely state of Bikaner in Rajasthan, aloo bhujia came into existence once manufacturers started experimenting with different flavours. Future Consumer Limited’s leading food brand Tasty Treat continues to experiment with the standard aloo bhujia to cater to the evolving consumer tastes. Keeping the popularity of international flavours in mind, Tasty Treat’s has come up with a range of Firangi Bhujia, an infusion of traditional aloo bhujia with four of the most craved international flavours – Wasabi, Peri Peri, Barbeque and Schezwan.

Tasty Treat’s range of Firangi Bhujia has increased the versatility of the traditional aloo bhujia. Many foodies are already trying out different ways to use it as a condiment to give their favourite dish an extra kick. Archana’s Kitchen recommends pairing the schezwan flavoured Firangi Bhujia with manchow soup to add some crunch. Kalyan Karmakar sprinkled the peri peri flavoured Firangi Bhujia over freshly made poha to give a unique taste to a regular breakfast item. Many others have picked a favourite amongst the four flavours, some admiring the smoky flavour of barbeque Firangi Bhujia and some enjoying the fiery taste of the peri peri flavour.

Be it the kick of wasabi in the crunch of bhujia, a bhujia sandwich with peri peri zing, maska pav spiced with schezwan bhujia or barbeque bhujia with a refreshing cold beverage - the new range of Firangi Bhujia manages to balance the novelty of exotic flavours with the familiarity of tradition. To try out Tasty Treat’s Firangi Bhujia, find a store near you.

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This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Tasty Treat and not by the Scroll editorial team.