IPL Auction 2020: 3 teams that will be looking to sign specialist openers
Openers have a huge say in a team's fortunes in T20 cricket. The kind of start the openers provide paves the way for big totals, which is why IPL openers have always been in the limelight.
Be it Brendon McCullum, who kick-started the IPL with a blistering knock in the inaugural match in 2008, or Chris Gayle, who has entertained the crowds for years with his big-hitting, openers have garnered a lot of attention. Even Virat Kohli, who normally bats in the middle-order for the national side, opens the innings for RCB in the IPL.
Teams have always put a lot of emphasis on having strong openers in their squad. That said, the expectations are also very high from the openers; if they fail to perform in a couple of matches, more often than not they are dropped from the playing XI.
Quite a few well-established international openers like Chris Lynn, Evin Lewis and Martin Guptill have been released by their sides this year. Against that background, here are three teams that will need to sign up specialist openers at the auction.
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#3 Rajasthan Royals
Squad: Ankit Rajpoot, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Mahipal Lomror, Manan Vohra, Mayank Markande, Rahul Tewatia, Riyan Parag, Sanju Samson, Shashank Singh, Shreyas Gopal, Steven Smith, Varun Aaron
After trading out Ajinkya Rahane, Rajasthan Royals are in desperate need of a specialist opener who can hold the fort for them at the top.
Jos Buttler has had huge success as an opener for the Royals and they will bank on him to come good once again in the upcoming season. But Buttler is a regular member of England across formats, which raises questions over his availability.
They do have the option of opening with Sanju Samson and Manan Vohra, but Samson isn't a specialist opener while Vohra hasn't played too many games in the IPL of late. Thus, the Royals will need to rope in openers at the auction.
Martin Guptill and Colin Munro will be on their radar.