Owing to a long international season, several cricketers have either been ruled out or will miss the initial stages of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The likes of Virat Kohli, Ravindra Jadeja, Umesh Yadav, Shakib Al Hasan, and Carlos Braithwaite are the ones who are currently unavailable for selection, while AB de Villiers, Murali Vijay, JP Duminy, Ravichandran Ashwin and KL Rahul are amid the players who won’t be available for the entire IPL season. All these names are huge in the T20 format and it will be difficult for their respective sides to fill their shoes, without affecting their results.
Barring Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), all other franchises are set to miss at least one key player’s services during the tenth edition of the cash-rich tournament. Hyderabad’s Mustafizur Rahman, who had earlier hinted to miss the IPL to remain fresh for the upcoming ICC Champions Trophy, is expected to join the SRH squad after playing the final match of the limited-overs series against Sri Lanka. He was a surprise pick by the SRH in 2016 and the trick eventually did wonders for them. Rahman, who picked 17 wickets in 16 matches, played a major role in SRH’s title victory last year.
A smart IPL Auction 2017
The Hyderabad-based franchise’s administration and support staff are inclusive of massive names. Tom Moody as head coach, Muttiah Muralitharan as their bowling coach and Indian legend VVS Laxman is their mentor. These veterans along with skipper David Warner chalked their requirements clearly prior to the 2017 IPL Auction. Although they won in 2016, they were still devoid of quality spinners.
The Sunrisers made smart purchases in the auction by buying the Afghan spin duo of Mohammad Nabi and Rashid Khan along with local experienced man, Pravin Tambe. At the end of the auction, SRH with INR 12.25 in their bank had the most funds left among the other franchises. The club already had some big faces in their team and which is why they have focussed on uncapped players along with the Afghans. The spin trio has brought a perfect blend in the Sunrisers’ squad, which will aim to become the only second side, after Chennai Super Kings, to defend their title.
— Mohammad Nabi (@MohammadNabi007) April 4, 2017
The experience factor
The Sunrisers have ensured that there is at least one senior player present in each department of the side. For instance, Ricky Bhui will be under the guidance of Warner, Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson at the top-order. Yuvraj Singh’s experience will always be handy for other all-rounders like Deepak Hooda, Moises Henriques and Ben Cutting. Ashish Nehra without any doubt will be SRH’s spearhead and will mentor the likes of Bhuveneshwar Kumar, Rahman and Barinder Sran, considering his 18-year-old international experience.
— SunRisers Hyderabad (@SunRisers) April 3, 2017
Out of 23-man team, SRH retained 17 players. They did not make any unnecessary inclusion or exclusion. The changes were made keeping their basic requirements in mind. The current team is more or less similar to the previous edition; only nine more players were bought to complete the side for IPL 2017. With quality players in every unit, be it batting, bowling or wicketkeeping, SRH looks the most balanced side between the eight teams that are going to fight for the coveted trophy.
— R♔hit (@RohitBharit) May 30, 2016
In 2016, Warner led from the front with both bat and excellent captaincy; Bhuveneshwar was the leading wicket-taker; Rahman won hearts in his IPL debut season; Yuvraj had chipped in his valuable all-around act; Naman Ojha was the leading wicketkeeper with most dismissals; the merge of the experienced and young players has been a windfall for SRH in the past and will continue to do so when the Orange Army will conquer the Royal Challengers Bangalore at home in the opening fixture of IPL 2017 on Wednesday.