3 reasons why SRH should drop Marco Jansen in their next IPL 2024 clash

Marco Jansen has struggled in his short stint so far in IPL 2024. (PC: BCCI)
Marco Jansen has struggled in his short stint so far in IPL 2024. (PC: BCCI)

After their loss to the bottom-placed Mumbai Indians (MI) on Monday, SunRisers Hyderabad (SRH) are in a critical place in IPL 2024.

Their next match is at home against Lucknow Super Giants, a team that's level with them on points at fifth position, which could decide whether they qualify for playoffs. This means even the smallest of mistakes are off the table. They need to be at their level best, starting with fielding their first 11 men in Hyderabad.

After their losses to Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK), they made the big call to drop former captain Aiden Markram for all-rounder Marco Jansen. Now, even though Jansen is one of the most exciting and talented prospects in world cricket, he doesn't quite fit the needs of the current SRH setup.

Below, we make a case of why he needs to be dropped for the LSG game for a batter:

#3 Too many pacers

Usually in the second half of an IPL season, teams start to realize the importance of spinners as the pitches slow down and take a bit of turn. SRH have gone the opposite direction by not only dropping Mayank Markande but also playing as many as four specialist seamers despite having the luxury of boasting Nitish Reddy in their ranks.

Jansen has conceded almost 80 runs for just one wicket in two games. Markande, on the other hand, was finally coming to his own this season, with eight wickets in seven games. Before he got dropped, he had bowled spells of 2/46, 2/26, and 1/42.

Jansen has the x-factor with the new ball but SRH can replace that by bowling an over each from Pat Cummins and T Natarajan. It'll still leave them six overs for their best middle and death-overs pacer.

Without an attacking spinner, SRH couldn't break the monotony against MI, something that Kolkata Knight Riders did pretty well against a similar assault from Suryakumar Yadav in the previous game.

#2 The batting wasn't broken, now it is

SRH's whole identity at the start of the season was having one of the most fearsome batting lineups with a bowling attack that could back it up. Even Pat Cummins' body language and statements throughout the season said the same. By dropping Markram they upended that identity in the middle of the season.

Markram wasn't in great form but he gave confidence to Travis Head and Heinrich Klaasen on the other end and his 30s and 40s were crucial SRH's early wins.

And it's not like SRH are completely committed to becoming a bowling-first side. They brought back Mayank Agarwal, who was in an even worse form in the initial games, in the Markram spot against MI, only to see him get out for 5 (6). Then, when the batting still didn't click, they brought in Sanvir Singh and didn't give him the ball in the second innings. The impact player just batted for eight balls.

Now, SRH are still batting deep (because Jansen is a handy batter) but have given up the middle-order steel which bridged the ultra-aggressive top order with the likes of Abdul Samad, Shabaz, and Cummins in the lower order. The best aspect of their team is now broken when, despite the two losses, it didn't need to be fixed.

#3 SRH have bigger match-winners available

Sometimes, more than the typical balance of a team, T20 sides prefer picking their biggest match-winners and building the team around them. SRH seemed to be doing the same in the first half of the season and Reddy's unexpected contributions with both bat and ball vindicated their strategy.

Jansen, despite his obvious quality, isn't a bigger match-winner than Glenn Phillips. The wicketkeeper-batter is not only one of the best middle-order hitters in T20s in the world but also a handy spinner and probably the best fielder in IPL 2024 with the ability to change games with his catches and out-fielding alone.

If Markram's form was the issue, SRH could have simply brought in Phillips, who would have played the same role better than Mayank without forcing them to go against the philosophy. If he replaces Jansen now, alongside Markande coming in for Mayank, it would strengthen both weak spots for SRH.

Then, SRH can also bring back Jaydev Unadkat, who had eight wickets in as many games, for Sanvir Singh as their impact player to support Bhuvneshwar Kumar with the new ball. In this way, they'll have three spinners, three pacers, and a much better batting order alongside more flexibility for the impact player rule.

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Edited by Samya Majumdar
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