Every captain in world cricket now knows the importance of getting the wicket Nicholas Pooran early.

But Pooran was an unknown quantity back in 2018 when he came to the UAE.

The West Indian was picked by the Northern Warriors for the 2018 T10 League in Sharjah.

With just five T20 international matches under his belt when he arrived on these shores for that T10 tournament, nobody in the cricket fraternity knew what to expect from the fresh-faced West Indian.

But he went on a big-scoring spree for the Warriors in the T10 format, hitting 33 sixes at the iconic Sharjah Cricket Stadium, the highest in that tournament.

The Warriors clinched the T10 title on the back of Pooran who scored 324 from nine matches at a staggering strike rate of 245.45.

A few weeks after that T10 tournament in Sharjah, Kings XI Punjab picked him for $590,000.

Pooran hasn't looked back since.

On Wednesday in in the IPL Eliminator, Mumbai Indians will be desperate to see the back of Pooran.

As Mumbai prepares for its big battle against Lucknow Super Giants on Wednesday, the five-time champion will be wary of the array of hard-hitting batsmen in the rival team's line-up.

With their swashbuckling style, the likes of Marcus Stoinis, Kyle Mayers and Quinton de Kock can change a game of cricket in the blink of an eye.

But none of them is as dangerous with the bat as Pooran.

With 358 runs from 14 matches, Pooran may not be among the top 10 scorers this season in the IPL.

But his strike rate of 173.78 is the best among batsmen that have scored more than 150 runs in the tournament.

Such is the impact made by the 27-year-old left-hander in the lower middle-order that Lucknow has lost only one match this season in which Pooran has made more than 30.

While there have been a few stunning match-winning innings like the 44 not out off 13 balls against the Sunrisers Hyderabad and 45 off 19 balls against the Punjab Kings, his best knock of the season came against the Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Chasing 213 in Bangalore, Lucknow was in all sorts of trouble when Pooran walked in with his team needing 114 runs off 56 balls with six wickets in hand.

But the Trinidadian batsman launched a brutal attack on the RCB bowlers as his 62 off 19 balls eventually helped Lucknow win a last-ball thriller by one wicket.

He hit seven massive sixes in that stunning knock, silencing the boisterous home supporters in Bangalore.

Now Pooran wil be backing himself to silence the legions of Mumbai fans on Wednesday.

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