In IPL, a team can have as many as 25 players in their squad out of which 8 can be foreign players. This means few players find it difficult to feature in playing XI. It is highly unlikely that an inexperienced Indian domestic player will feature in starting XI for any franchise. Though players like Jaspreet Bumrah or Praveen Tambe were able to overcome this barrier to feature for their respective franchise despite having little first-class experience. On the other hand, someone like Siddhesh Lad has played only one game for Mumbai Indians despite being in their squad since 2015.
When it comes to overseas players, a franchise always look for proven match-winners to fill those limited 8 spots. These superstar players have a reputation to play in every match. So, when some of these players don't feature regularly in the playing XI(thanks to a settled XI or team combination), it becomes a little unusual.
Now let's have a look into players who have been under-used by their respective side in this year of IPL.
#1 Mitchell McClenaghan
McClenaghan played a big role in Mumbai Indians winning the IPL crown in 2015. He is capable of bowling in the powerplay and even at the death. McClenaghan has been a crucial member of MI. He has an impressive record of taking 71 wickets in 54 matches at an economy of 8.61.
This year though he has got only 4 games to play so far. Mumbai has found a deadly duo of Malinga and Bumrah who are doing exceptionally well. With Hardik Pandya as the third seamer, the bowling department looks sorted at this moment.
He proved his worth in the last league game against KKR by bowling a maiden over to Robin Uthappa which changed to the momentum of the game in favour of MI.
#2 Shakib Al Hasan
Shakib, one of the top all-rounders across the cricketing landscape and one of the best players of Bangladesh is one of the major players retained by SRH team management for this season. He initially played for KKR and has been a proven performer both with the bat and ball in the IPL circuit for years on end. He has been a match-winner who can contribute at any time in a match with his all-round ability. He also has experience of 63 IPL games.
This year though he has played only three games for Sunrisers Hyderabad, who have managed to field a settled XI throughout this season. With his economical bowling, Mohammad Nabi has kept him out for the majority of the season.
SRH might look to play him to strengthen their middle order in the upcoming match against DC.
#3 Martin Guptill
One of the highly successful batsmen of the modern times, Martin Guptill has featured in only 12 IPL matches in 3 years. He has been part of Kings XI Punjab, Mumbai Indians and Sunrisers Hyderabad but never managed to cement his place in any season.
This year has been no different either. David Warner and Jonny Bairstow were in peak form and kept him out of the playing XI. With the exit of these two from the IPL owing to national duty, the time has come for him to prove his worth.
With SRH qualifying for playoffs, he will have a huge responsibility on his shoulder to give good starts and take his team into the final.
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