India has always had a plethora of right-handed batters, but in recent times there have been quite a few left-handed batters like Rishabh Pant, Ishan Kishan, and Nitish Rana who have made a mark on the big stage. Nitish Rana has been mostly seen in the role of an accumulator in the middle order to take on the spinners but the southpaw has often stepped on the gas when his team needed acceleration.
Born on 27th December 1993 and hailing from Delhi, Rana started his professional career in 2013 when he made his List A debut for Delhi against Assam during the 2012-13 Vijay Hazare Trophy. Later in March 2013, he made his T20 debut for Delhi against Vidarbha in the 2012-13 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. A couple of years later, in 2015, he made his first-class debut for Delhi against Vidarbha in the 2015-16 Ranji Trophy season. In his debut first-class season, he amassed 557 runs to end as Delhi’s top run scorer.
In 2016, Rana made his Indian T20 League debut but had limited opportunities in that season. He had a breakout season in the 2017 Indian T20 League, scoring 333 runs and playing a key role in the Mumbai franchise's title-winning campaign. However, he was released by the Mumbai franchise ahead of the 2018 Indian T20 League auction. The Kolkata franchise showed faith in him and acquired his services for the 2018 season; he has since become an integral part of the franchise.
With a strike rate of over 146 in the 2019 edition and an average of 34.40, Nitish was often touted as one of the most reliable players in the Kolkata line-up. Even though he mostly plays in the middle order, Nitish didn’t disappoint when he was asked to open the innings against the Hyderabad franchise that season during a daunting 182-run chase, and his quickfire 68 off 47 balls set the tone for his side. He was released ahead of the 2022 mega auction but resigned for INR 8 crore scoring 361 runs at a strike rate of 143.82.
Rana eventually made his India debut during the tour of Sri Lanka in 2022. He made his ODI and T20I debuts for India in that series. Having been retained by the Kolkata franchise, he will ply his trade for them in the 2023 Indian T20 League season. Nitish Rana bats in the middle order for Delhi as well as the Kolkata franchise. He is a stylish left-handed batter and can play both pace and spin well. He is more than decent with the ball and contributes with his off-spin as well.