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IPL 2019: Opinion - One benched player from each team who should be in the playing XI

Shreyas
Sam Billings should get an opportunity
Sam Billings should get an opportunity

The Indian Premier League has crossed the halfway point and every match being played becomes much more serious with respect to which teams make it to the playoffs and which teams don't.

The points table is constantly seeing change with every passing moment and the teams have been making changes to their playing XI based on the conditions and opposition and while few of them have been clever decisions, few decisions have been wrong ones.

The coaching staff and captain would've figured out the right team combination to play with and all teams should be settled by now. The decisions taken by the teams during the auctions have come to the fore and not all deals have worked out too well.

The back-up players from each team have slowly started to feature in games due to the misfiring or injury of the first-choice players. On that note, let's take a look at one benched player from each team who deserves to play.


#8 Royal Challengers Bangalore - Washington Sundar

Sundar is pretty handy with the bat.
Sundar is pretty handy with the bat.

Washington Sundar has surprisingly been benched for the first half of the season by RCB and the team finds themselves at the bottom of the table with 1 win from 7 games. RCB have imminent problems with their bowling and they have constantly leaked runs in the power play and the death overs.

They initially played only 2 spinners and got punished and though they have brought in Pawan Negi, Sundar should be brought into the side to further strengthen their side's bowling.

Sundar can take Moeen Ali's place in the side as he's more of a specialist bowler and must be used in the power play to stem the flow of runs. He has a tremendous T20 record playing for India and has bowled with immense control over his line and length and has choked the batsmen.

Sundar has 10 international wickets to his name at an economy rate of 6.04 and he can be used as a trump card during the power play. He is a good striker of the ball and can provide a couple of cameos towards the end of an innings.

#7 Rajasthan Royals - Ashton Turner

Ashton Turner is yet to make his debut for RR
Ashton Turner is yet to make his debut for RR

The Rajasthan Royals have been another team who haven't had a great start to their season. The team from the Pink City have got 2 wins from 7 games and a major reason for this has been the inability of their middle order to score runs. Steve Smith has got runs to his name but has scored them at a very slow pace and has been a problem to the side.

RR lack punch in their middle and need a finisher in their team, someone who's a proper middle order batsman and Ashton Turner seems to be the right man for the job. His arrival allows players like Tripathi to play up the order and he fits into the team perfectly as a utility player. Turner is a solid option for the team to pick and has plenty of T20 experience to bank on. He needs to get a game as soon as possible if RR want to bolster their batting and bring balance to their side.

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#6 Sunrisers Hyderabad - Billy Stanlake

Billy Stanlake did a good job for SRH last season.
Billy Stanlake did a good job for SRH last season.

Sunrisers Hyderabad find themselves in the middle of the points table with 3 wins from 7 games as their bowling attack hasn't fired this season. Their pace bowlers haven't generated the expected wickets and Rashid Khan has been dealt with by opposition batsmen. SRH have a great opening pair which is their X-Factor in batting and they need to bring in Aussie quickie Billy Stanlake to give them an X-Factor with the ball.

Stanlake brings immense pace and bounce whenever he loads up to bowl and really impressed last season. The duo of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Siddharth Kaul have failed to pick up wickets and barring Sandeep Sharma, none of their pacers have been a threat to batsmen. Stanlake deserves to play and can impress if given the nod.


#5 Kings XI Punjab - Prabhsimran Singh

Prabhsimran Singh should be making his KXIP debut
Prabhsimran Singh should be making his KXIP debut

Young keeper-batsman Prabhsimran Singh made headlines when he fetched ₹4.8 Crore at the auction but he is yet to feature for KXIP and needs to do so as soon as possible. KXIP's middle order has been stable but hasn't been scoring runs at the required pace and this has hampered them on many occasions so far.

Prabhsimran is a powerful player and has been rated very high and he needs to be played in order for the side to evaluate all their options. He has a tremendous U-19 and domestic record and has the potential to become a future superstar.

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#4 Delhi Capitals - Sherfane Rutherford

Rutherford must be used by Delhi
Rutherford must be used by Delhi

The Delhi Capitals have had a good start to their season to the joy of their fans and the team has clicked well this season. They have however had a problem with their middle order who seem to falter on every given occasion and their loss to the Kings XI Punjab and the tense super over finish vs KKR could've been avoided.

This trouble in the middle order has really hampered them and they may want to consider bringing in fresh legs into the side. Sherfane Rutherford was one of the team's buys at the auction and they may want to get the Caribbean batsmen into their side because he brings so much power and versatility to the team's middle order. He has an impressive T20 record with a penchant for playing the big shots. Rutherford can help them to get more runs in the death overs and can help the side finish off games without much hassle.


#3 Mumbai Indians - Mitchell McClenaghan

McClenaghan should be brought back. (Image Courtesy: IPLT20)
McClenaghan should be brought back. (Image Courtesy: IPLT20)

The Mumbai Indians need to bring back Mitchell McClenaghan into the side after benching him for 4 matches this season. Alzarri Joseph's form had kept him out of the team but Joseph has lost his mystery touch and will reportedly miss the remainder of the campaign due to a shoulder injury. Joseph has been leaking runs at will and after his dream debut and hasn't picked up a single wicket since. Mumbai have failed to pick up early wickets and McClenaghan is the solution.

He ranks 3rd for most wickets picked up in the power play since Vivo IPL 2018 and is a strike bowler and natural wicket-taker. The team needs his experience and pace and need to bring him back for their next game.

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#2 Kolkata Knight Riders - Sandeep Warrier

Sandeep has played for RCB in the IPL
Sandeep has played for RCB in the IPL

The Kolkata Knight Riders' pace bowlers haven't had the desired impact up till now in this edition of the IPL. Neither Lockie Ferguson nor Prasidh Krishna have done a good job and hence, Sandeep Warrier, a replacement signing for Kamlesh Nagarkoti must be brought into the side.

He is a very experienced T20 bowler and has played in the IPL before. He has been a great player in the domestic circuit and KKR must consider bringing him in due to Krishna's poor form so far. He has picked up only 2 wickets from 8 games and this desperately calls for a change which KKR need to make.


#1 Chennai Super Kings - Sam Billings

Sam Billings won CSK the game vs KKR last season
Sam Billings won CSK the game vs KKR last season

The Chennai Super Kings' openers haven't fired this season and their slow starts have meant that their middle order is constantly under pressure. Ambati Rayudu has already been pushed lower down the order in order to get things right but the opening pair has still faltered this season.

CSK must consider bringing in Sam Billings to strengthen the middle order and push Rayudu back up the order. Billings is a very clever player and can be very useful during chases. His innovation and big-hitting abilities can take some pressure off MS Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav who have worked very hard to ensure that the team has crossed the line. He has also opened the batting playing in England and CSK need to take a risk if they want to get the desired results from their players.

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Edited by Zaid Khan
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