IPL 2018 Auction: Former India cricketer TA Sekhar reveals criteria for selection in the IPL
What’s the story?
With the dates for the IPL 11 auction nearing, former scout for India Cricket and the Mumbai Indians franchise, TA Sekhar has given detailed insight into the criteria for getting selected in the richest T20 league in the world. Speaking to SportStar, the cricketer turned coach highlighted the expectations kept from a bowler or batsman in the IPL.
“We are looking at fast bowlers who could bowl during powerplay as well as during the death overs. If it is a spinner, he should be able to bowl an over in the powerplay and contain batsmen, who are known for going after bowlers,” Sekhar told Sportstar.
“A fast bowler should have variations — yorkers, slower balls, slow bouncer and the bouncer. He should be able to use all the variations effectively.”
“If it is an opening batsman, then we are looking at how he handles fast bowlers and whether he can hit the ball or gives away more of dot balls. A middle-order batsman should be able to rotate the strike. We are also looking at a batsman who can hit sixes and fours in the last four overs.
In case you didn’t know
The IPL player retention list was released last week, with some franchises retaining up to three players each. The mega auctions will be held on January 27 and 28 in Bengaluru, while the tournament will be played in April and May.
The heart of the matter
Sekhar also emphasized on fitness, saying that capability, but without fitness, will not land an IPL contract. It is a long tournament which requires consistency in fitness.
He also clarified that there is a lot of difference between the performances put up at state level cricket and those put up in the IPL. He reasoned that good performances in domestic circuit doesn’t warrant good performances in the T20 extravaganza, where the pressure is more severe.
It will be interesting to see the names of players who will be retained using the Right to Match card in the forthcoming auctions. Some of the star players from this year’s Ranji Trophy, Vidarbha’s Rajneesh Gurbani and Punjab’s Abhishek Gupta among others can be expected to get a good price money in the auctions.
We have seen in the past how sudden injuries to star players played spoilsport for the franchise. Case in point is Chris Lynn’s injury in IPL 2017, which was a huge setback for KKR. Frequent injuries often result from lack of fitness, which makes Sekhar’s point on the survival of the fittest valid.