Babar Azam, Rizwan, Shaheen: The Case for Pakistan Players In the IPL

Babar Azam, Rizwan, Shaheen: The Case for Pakistan Players In the IPL

While the IPL is in full swing in India, the Pakistan-South Africa series is catching the attention of many.

In the 3rd T20I, Pakistan chased down 204 runs with 9 wickets & 2 overs to spare, courtesy a 197-run partnership from Mohammad Rizwan & Babar Azam, who scored 122 (59). Earlier in the day, news broke that Azam also dethroned Virat Kohli as the #1 ICC ODI batsman after a mammoth 1258 days.

Add Fakhar Zaman’s brilliant 193 in the ODI series, Hafeez’s second coming, & the fast bowling line up, the question should be asked—Is the IPL really the best T20 tournament without Pakistani players?

The Fall of Pakistan Cricket

Pakistan dominated the Indo-Pak cricket rivalry in the 1990s, while India has crushed it in the 2010s. Only in the 2000s, did we have battle of equals.

For India’s tenacious Rahul Dravid, Pakistan had Younis Khan. Similarly, the elegance of Yousuf & Tendulkar, stability of Inzamam & Laxman/Ganguly, & exuberance of Afridi & Sehwag were on par with each other. The destructiveness of Shoaib Akhtar-Asif-Sami on one side matched the abilities of Irfan Pathan-Zaheer Khan-Kumble-Harbhajan on the other.

India narrowly won the 2004 Test series 2-1 & ODI series 3-2 held in Pakistan. Pakistan returned the favor next year with a 1-1 drawn Test series & 4-2 ODI victory held in India. Both memorable events.

Hence, the struggle of Pakistan cricket team over the last decade & lack of competitiveness in recent ICC tournaments has been disheartening. The new generation of Pakistan cricket is slowly making this a battle of equals again.

The New Generation of Pakistan Cricket Rises

Mohammad Rizwan is currently the best T20I batsman in the world (sorry Dawid Malan). Shaheen Shah Afridi can compete with the Rabadas & Bumrahs of the world. The leg spin of Shadab Khan & Usman Qadir with a line up of Afridi-Naseem Shah-Hasan Ali-Haris Rauf can send shivers down the opposition camp.

Babar Azam is the best player in the world. Period.

Each IPL team can benefit from Haider Ali & Faheem Ashraf’s power, experience of Mohammad Hafeez & Shoaib Malik, and the pace of discarded Mohammad Amir & Mohammad Hasnain.

“Imagine Babar-Kohli opening for RCB, Fakhar-Rohit hitting double centuries, & Bumrah-Shaheen bowling together at the death.”

With South African, Sri Lankan, & West Indian foreign contingent in the prime of their careers from 2007-2017, absence of Pakistani players in the IPL made sense.

It no longer does.

South Africa & Sri Lanka’s Eternal Transition Period

Kumar Sangakkara & Mahela Jayawardene once used to captain IPL teams. They are now the only Sri Lankan representation in IPL 2021 (as coaches) as no SL players were picked in the auction. Gone is the era of Malinga-Murali-Dilshan.

With an eternal transition process in South Africa, only Rabada-Nortje (and Ngidi to a certain extent) have risen to the occasion. Otherwise, AB De Villiers & Faf Du Plessis from an earlier generation are still carrying the South Africa baton. Similarly, lots of West Indians in the IPL are from the World Cup winning generation (Gayle, Narine, Pollard, Russell).

The lack of variety in foreign talent is hitting the brand of the IPL. It seems that only India & England are producing new talent year in & year out, with Australia & New Zealand close behind.

It is time for some more talent to flow in—Pakistani talent that is. On the flip side, BCCI’s reluctance to let Indians play abroad should also be reconsidered, but that is a story for another day.

Looking Back to IPL 2008

The inception of the tournament in 2008 is the perfect template to follow.

Rajasthan Royals benefitted from having Pakistan talent in their squad with Kamral Akmal, Younis Khan, & most importantly Sohail Tanvir, the maiden purple cap winner. The Knight Riders enjoyed the pace duo of Shoaib Akhtar & Umar Gul, who took a match-winning 4-fer. KKR also had Salman Butt & the ageless Mohammad Hafeez in their ranks.

Few others participated in the IPL as well—Shahid Afridi (Deccan Chargers), Shoaib Malik & Mohammad Asif (Delhi Daredevils), & Misbah-ul-Haq (Royal Challengers Bangalore).

IPL 2020 Was Ideal But There Is Still Time

IPL 2020 was the best opportunity for adding Pakistani players to the IPL auctions. The world was struggling from a pandemic, and the tournament was taking place at Pakistan’s adopted home ground, the UAE.

What better time to get Pakistan players in? Unfortunately, that did not happen.

There is still time.

Babar is 26, Rizwan 28, & Amir 29. It would be great to watch Mohammad Amir versus Virat Kohli once again, and there is enough love across the border to make it happen.

Are Pakistani players allowed in IPL?

As of now, Pakistani players are not allowed in the IPL. They played in the 2008 IPL, but have not played since. Here is an entire list.

Which Pakistan players played in IPL?

Sohail Tanvir, Umar Gul, Shoaib Akhtar, Kamran Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Misbah-ul-Haq, Younis Khan, Shahid Afridi, Salman Butt, & Mohammad Hafeez took part in the 2008 IPL.

Players from Pakistani origin like Azhar Mahmood (English passport) & Imran Tahir (South Africa) have participated after 2008, while Wasim Akram has coached.

Copyright (2021: 4/14/2021)– @Nitesh Mathur, aka Nit-X – bcd@brokokencricketdreams.com

Photo Courtesy: Koshy Koshy via CC by 2.0

SRH Vs RCB IPL 2021 Match 6 Review: Hyderabad Channel Their Inner Kolkata

SRH Vs RCB IPL 2021 Match 6 Review: Hyderabad Channel Their Inner Kolkata

SRH Vs RCB – IPL 2021 Match #6 Quick Review! Surely, not two days in a row? Chennai pitch, runs on the board, and choke the chase.

Match Details, Scorecard, & Video Highlights

Scorecard: SRH Vs RCB Video Highlights

Toss: SRH won the toss and chose to field first.

Venue: MA Chidambaram, Chepauk, Chennai

Umpires: Nitin Menon & Ulhas Gandhe

What Actually Happened:

  • Winner: RCB won by 6 runs
  • Scores: RCB 149/8 Vs SRH 143/9
  • Player of the Match: Glenn Maxwell
  • Best Figures
    • Jason Holder – 3/30
    • Shahbaz Ahmed – 3/7
  • Most Runs
    • Glenn Maxwell – 59 (41)
    • David Warner – 54 (37)

Moments of The Day: Maxwell, Catches The Highlight

The IPL is full of surprises and memorable moments. Here are my moments of today:

  • Glenn Maxwell was the difference between the two sides. After a poor IPL 2020 (and no sixes) he has come up with 39 (28) with 2 sixes and 59 (41) with 3 sixes on slow tracks. The reverse paddle to yorker-master Natarajan was my moment of the match.
  • Scores of catches have been dropped over the past week, but Rashid Khan, Vijay Shankar, & Manish Pandey came up with running/diving catches for SRH, and the over that turned the game—Harshal Patel, AB de Villiers running catch, & Shahbaz himself caught skiers.
  • Rashid Khan is an absolute gun T20 player. 4-0-18-2 and 17 (9) giving SRH some hope at the end.

Honorable Mentions: Warner’s 54, Holder’s dismissal of struggling Kohli

T20 World Cup Spotlight: Shahbaz Ahmed, Harshal Patel Add To India’s Depth

Given that the T20I World Cup is around the corner, and pandemic induced rules has changed the rules to 23-player squad, we will be analyzing the impact of each match on the T20I World Cup squad.

  • Shahbaz Ahmed & Harshal Patel – In all reality, they may never wear an Indian cap given the tough competition, but these two have been brilliant first class cricketers who are finally getting their dues in the IPL. Shahbaz is the Ben Stokes of Bengal Cricket, while Harshal has been consistent over the last 5 years. Shahbaz’s 2-0-7-3 & Harshal’s economical overs to Manish Pandey (with slower off-cutters/nailed yorkers) sealed the game for RCB.

Also Read: Top 75 Current Cricketers In India

Broken Cricket Dream of the Day: Manish Pandey

  • Manish Pandey has probably been mismanaged by the Indian cricket team, but has been given ample of opportunities by SRH. He has now two consecutive innings – 61*(44) & 38 (39) – that could be considered ‘losing’ knocks. Dot balls & strike rate of 97.43 are not going to win you games.

As Simon Doull quoted Cricbuzz’s statistician, “In the last 4 seasons, Manish Pandey has faced 30+ 14 times in the last 4 seasons. Sunrisers has lost 11 of them.” That is the story of his IPL career.

IPL 2021 Points Table

No need to go elsewhere for the Points Table. We will keep updating it in every article!

TeamsPlayedWonLostTied
No-Result
PointsNet Run Rate
1. Royal Challengers Bangalore22004+0.175
2. Delhi Capitals11002+0.779
3. Mumbai Indians2 1102+0.225
4. Punjab Kings11002+ 0.2
5. Kolkata Knight Riders211000.00
6. Rajasthan Royals10100-0.2
7. Sunrisers Hyderabad20200-0.4
8.. Chennai Super Kings10100-0.779
IPL 2021 Points Table

Tomorrow’s Preview

The Delhi Capitals take on the Rajasthan Royals in Mumbai. Who do you think will win this one?

Also, if you have not yet read our IPL Previews, here is a list of all of them! Check them out and share ahead:

  1. Chennai Super Kings – CSK Preview
  2. Delhi Capitals – DC Preview
  3. Kolkata Knight Riders – KKR Preview
  4. Mumbai Indians – MI Preview
  5. Punjab Kings – PBKS Preview
  6. Rajasthan Royals – RR Preview
  7. Royal Challengers Bangalore – RCB Preview
  8. Sunrisers Hyderabad – SRH Preview

Copyright (2021: 4/14/2021)– @Nitesh Mathur, aka Nit-X – bcd@brokokencricketdreams.com

Home » Archives for April 14, 2021

KKR Vs MI IPL 2021 Match 5 Review: Kolkata Seniors Throw It Away

KKR Vs MI IPL 2021 Match 5 Review: Kolkata Seniors Throw It Away

KKR Vs MI– IPL 2021 Match #5 Quick Review! The Mumbai Indians sure know how to win games & Kolkata Knight Riders sure know how to lose them. As a KKR fan, the ending was hard to watch. Great heist from MI nevertheless.

Match Details, Scorecard, & Video Highlights

Scorecard: KKR Vs MI Video Highlights

Toss: KKR won the toss and chose to field first.

Venue: MA Chidambaram, Chepauk, Chennai

Umpires: Chettithody Shamshuddin & Chris Gaffaney

What Actually Happened: Collapse of Epic Proportions

  • Winner: MI won by 10 runs
  • Scores: MI 152/10 Vs KKR 142/7
  • Player of the Match: Rahul Chahar
  • Best Figures
    • Andre Russell – 5/15
    • Rahul Chahar – 4/27
  • Most Runs
    • Suryakumar Yadav 56 (36)
    • Nitish Rana 57 (47)

Moments of The Day: Rahul Chahar Turns The Game

The IPL is full of surprises and memorable moments. Here are my moments of today:

  • Andre Russell, the bowler had a dream of a game. Barely able to lift himself with all the injuries & muscle, he came up with figures of 5-15 in 2 overs. Cleaned up the tail pretty nicely.
  • Rahul Chahar turns the game, literally. Chahar was the catalyst of the collapse that turned 72-0 in 8.4 overs to 142/7 in 20. Shubman Gill, Rahul Tripathi, Eoin Morgan, & most importantly, the well set Nitish Rana. The ball that dismissed Tripathi was the ball of the tournament so far. Rana unnecessarily danced down the pitch (to Chahar’s last ball by the way) & Shakib threw it away back-to-back sent panic into the KKR dressing room. DK-Russell lost their natural games trying to preserve their wickets, and in the process, gifted MI the game.

Honorable Mentions: Bumrah’s 19th shows his class; Russell’s 2 dropped catches a blessing in disguise

T20 World Cup Watch: Suryakumar, Krunal Strengthen Their Cases

Given that the T20I World Cup is around the corner, and pandemic induced rules has changed the rules to 23-player squad, we will be analyzing the impact of each match on the T20I World Cup squad.

  • In a pitch where nobody got going, Suryakumar Yadav batted beautifully – 56 (36) with 2 sixes. SKY is going from strength to strength after the India debut. He has a foot inside that World Cup squad.
  • The difference between the two sides was Krunal Pandya. From 126/7 in 17.3 overs, Krunal’s 15 (9) in 3 overs took MI to a respectable 152. When KKR were in a comfortable position, a miserly spell of 4-0-13-1 stalled KKR’s chase. He has been in-and-out of the T20I side, and this performance will just push him up the ladder.

Broken Cricket Dream of the Day: KKR Fans

  • The senior KKR batsman fail to live up to the hype. The strength of KKR was supposed to be their star-studded middle order—Eoin Morgan 9 (9), Dinesh Karthik 8* (11), Russell 9 (15), & Shakib 9 (9) this season. Yet, their only victories in the last two seasons have been due to Rana-Tripathi-Gill or Varun-Lockie.
  • DK not being able to finish the game & not even hitting a boundary was quite unlike him. Morgan hit one boundary, Shakib’s only 4 was an under edge against Rohit Sharma, & Russell’s only 4 was off of a free hit. Andre Russell, the batsman, has been especially disappointing over the last two seasons. 2019 apart and his contributions from the bat are minimal, especially with the likes of Lockie Ferguson & Ben Cutting on the sidelines.

Shah Rukh Khan summed it up perfectly.

  • Also hope Rohit Sharma is okay – twisted his ankle before his first ball. Ended up completing the over, but given his injury history, definitely a concern.

IPL 2021 Points Table

No need to go elsewhere for the Points Table. We will keep updating it in every article!

TeamsPlayedWonLostTied
No-Result
PointsNet Run Rate
1. Delhi Capitals11002+0.779
2. Mumbai Indians2 1102+0.225
3. Punjab Kings11002+ 0.2
4. Royal Challengers Bangalore11002+0.05
5. Kolkata Knight Riders211000.00
6. Rajasthan Royals10100-0.2
7. Sunrisers Hyderabad10100-0.5
8.. Chennai Super Kings10100-0.779
IPL 2021 Points Table

Tomorrow’s Preview

The Sunrisers Hyderabad take on the Royal Challengers Bangalore in Chennai. Who do you think will win this one?

Also, if you have not yet read our IPL Previews, here is a list of all of them! Check them out and share ahead:

  1. Chennai Super Kings – CSK Preview
  2. Delhi Capitals – DC Preview
  3. Kolkata Knight Riders – KKR Preview
  4. Mumbai Indians – MI Preview
  5. Punjab Kings – PBKS Preview
  6. Rajasthan Royals – RR Preview
  7. Royal Challengers Bangalore – RCB Preview
  8. Sunrisers Hyderabad – SRH Preview

Copyright (2021: 4/13/2021)– @Nitesh Mathur, aka Nit-X – bcd@brokokencricketdreams.com

Home » Archives for April 14, 2021