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IPL 2020: 1 Pakistan cricketer that would improve each IPL team

Sohail Tanvir was the leading wicket taker for the first ever IPL.
Sohail Tanvir was the leading wicket taker for the first ever IPL.
ANALYST
Modified 22 Oct 2020, 16:53 IST
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After seeing all the teams in action in this year's edition of the IPL, their strengths and weaknesses have become apparent. Some teams are struggling to cover for regular starters, while changes in balance and overseas picks have caused substantial gaps in some first XI's. So, if Pakistani players were permitted to take part in the IPL, who would be top of each teams' auction list? Let's have a look.

One Pakistani player that would improve each IPL team

Chennai Super Kings: Babar Azam

Babar Azam is probably the most reliable whit ball batsman in the world.
Babar Azam is probably the most reliable whit ball batsman in the world.

Reliability seems to be Chennai's number one concern in the IPL, and they may have to consider roping in overseas top-order batsman and pacers. As they have recruited younger pace bowlers like Sam Curran and Lungi Ngidi for the current season and already have spinners covered very well, with Mitchell Santner and Imran Tahir in their ranks, the Super Kings will need to focus on recruiting overseas openers soon.

It would be fantastic if they turn to Babar Azam. Babar's constant solid starts and reliable strike rate would be ideal for Chennai to build around.

Delhi Capitals: Khushdil Shah

Khushdil Shah would be a good fit for the Capitals. Alex Carey is the only genuine batting alternative to Shimron Hetmyer and Marcus Stoinis, and it's hard to see why he would be picked given his most famed prowess is as a keeper.

Khushdil would be a nice choice to battle with Hetmyer for his spot, given the West Indian has been pushed down further than Delhi originally intended, with Iyer and Pant taking the three and four role.

Khushdil Shah made his T20I debut against Australia.
Khushdil Shah made his T20I debut against Australia.
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Young 25-year-old prospect Khushdil smashed a 35 ball ton against the likes of Sohail Khan, Mohammad Hasnain and an in form Anwar Ali. He is likely to be Pakistan's finisher in the future, as he is their most destructive batsman. He can also keep wickets, which adds an extra dynamic to his usefulness as a reserve, and this aspect should also be used by Pakistan.

Kings XI Punjab: Wahab Riaz

Wahab Riaz is congratulated after picking up a wicket against England.
Wahab Riaz is congratulated after picking up a wicket against England.

Kings XI are crying out for an experienced death bowler this IPL. Chris Jordan has not been up to the mark, and their unwillingness to play Hardus Viljoen makes it unlikely that he'll ever be a first choice player.

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Wahab Riaz would be a good addition to Kings XI in the IPL. The experienced left-armer would give them a variation at the death, partnering Arshdeep Singh and Mohammad Shami. Since his international comeback, Riaz has been very consistent in his T20 performances.

Kolkata Knight Riders: Shadab Khan

Kolkata Knight Riders have one of the strongest sets of overseas players for their first XI in this IPL. Eoin Morgan will be given time to settle, all-rounders Sunil Narine and Andre Russell are always guaranteed picks, while Pat Cummins is solidly backed up by rapid Kiwi Lockie Ferguson and the dangerous swing bowler Ali Khan.

To give KKR some variation, Shadab Khan might be a good pick. A genuine batsman, Shadab can bat anywhere from three to the finisher role. Shadab always maintains the run rate when batting high up, while also having the ability to stop the rut. His bowling would also be invaluable as Shadab is one of the world's premier leg-spinners.

Shadab Khan is now one of the world
Shadab Khan is now one of the world's elite leg spinners and all-rounders.

With Kuldeep Yadav falling out of favour as a sure pick in the IPL, an all-rounder like Shadab might be a useful inclusion, while he could also be a fantastic alternative to Sunil Narine or Andre Russell; batting in the top six and bowling three or four overs.

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An additional piece of information to cement this choice is Shadab having represented Trinbago Knight Riders, which has always given a player a better chance of being picked for KKR in the IPL. Past players who were picked after representing TKR include Darren Bravo, Rovman Powell, Javon Searles and the aforementioned Ali Khan.

Click here to see dream 11 IPL 2020 match list.

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Published 20 Oct 2020, 22:49 IST
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