IPL 2020 auction: 3 players from West Indies franchises could bargain for
West Indies may not be the force they once used to be in the Test and ODI format. However, they have adapted brilliantly to the shortest format and, in fact, are the most successful team in the World T20, having won the championship twice, in 2012 and 2016.
Not surprisingly, players from the Caribbean have been in great demand in the Indian Premier League over the years. Chris Gayle, the ‘Universe Boss’, holds the record for the highest individual score in the IPL till date. He smashed an unbeaten 175 off 66 balls, a sizzling knock featuring 13 fours and 17 sixes, against the now defunct Pune Warriors India on April 23, 2013.
Gayle apart, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo and Andre Russell have tasted amazing success for varying franchises over the years In this feature, we look at three players from the current West Indian T20 set up franchises can have an eye on during the auction.
#3 Rovman Powell
It is a surprise that Rovman Powell has been left out of West Indies’ T20 squad for the series against Afghanistan. The right-hander has been among West Indies’ most consistent batsmen of late. He has two fifties to his name in the last five T20s -- 50 from 34 against Bangladesh at Dhaka and 54 from 34 against India at Lauderhill. Even in the second T20 against India at Providence, he made a quick unbeaten 32 from 20 balls.
Powell has the ability to hit the big sixes. In his 62-match T20 career, he has 64 sixes to his name. He was picked up by Kolkata Knight Riders for ₹30 lakh in 2017 before going unsold in 2018 at a base price of ₹50 lakh. She should be back in contention for 2020.
#2 Nicholas Pooran
A wicket-keeper bat, left-handed Nicholas Pooran is a highly impressive young talent in West Indies cricket. Pooran is said to have a steady head on his shoulders, evident from the attractive start he has made to his one-day career -- one hundred, and two fifties in 13 matches at an average of 43.90. Pooran got a couple of blazing fifties for Guyana Amazon Warriors in the recently concluded Caribbean Premier League (CPL). He is a highly experienced T20 cricketer, having played a total of 120 matches across the world. Pooran’s love for big-hitting is evident from the fact that he has hit as many as 161 sixes in his T20 career so far.
During IPL 2019 auction, he was picked up by Kings XI Punjab for ₹4.2 crore.
#1 Shimron Hetmyer
Shimron Hetmyer was marked for big things from a young age. It was Hetmyer who led the West Indies as they won their maiden Under-19 World Cup in Bangladesh in 2015-16. Hetmyer led from the front, notching up half-centuries in the quarter-final and semi-final. He hasn’t gone on to achieve great consistency with the senior side as such. However, those who witnessed Hetmyer blaze his way to 104 from 83 balls in an ODI against England earlier this year, would agree he is a special talent. Hetmyer also totaled 259 runs in five ODIs during the tour of India in 2018.
In 44 T20 games, Hetmyer has 870 runs to his name at a strike rate of 133.02, with one hundred, four fifties and 43 sixes. He was picked up by Royal Challengers Bangalore for ₹4.2 crore in IPL 2019.