IPL Overseas Picks: The curiosities and excitement for the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) have surely reached another level as the fans cannot wait more for the biggest cricketing carnival. In the tournament opener this season, defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI) will be facing the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on 9th April in Chennai.
As witnessed over the years in the IPL, the four overseas cricketers play a very important role in the combination of each side. Most of these overseas players come with a lot of experience of playing T20 cricket all across the globe and this benefits their IPL franchise to a great extent. In the upcoming edition of the IPL, many of the star foreign cricketers will be playing for their respective teams and it will be a great opportunity for the international cricketers to prepare for the ICC T20 World Cup scheduled to be held in India later this year.
Team-wise first choice overseas picks IPL 2021
1. MI overseas players – Kieron Pollard, Trent Boult, Quinton de Kock and Nathan Coulter-Nile
The defending champions Mumbai Indians have the luxury that they can pick the same set of overseas players who played the final encounter of the 2020 edition. However, with Quinton de Kock set to miss first few matches of this season due to national duty, they will have to look for his replacement alongside the obvious picks in Trent Boult, Kieron Pollard and Nathan Coulter-Nile. Chris Lynn is likely to partner Rohit Sharma at the top in de Kock’s absence. Mumbai did very well at the auction to secure some crucial back-up options in Adam Milne, James Neesham and Marco Jansen who have the ability to make a mark whenever the team needs them.
2. RCB overseas players – AB de Villiers, Glenn Maxwell, Daniel Christian and Kyle Jamieson
Royal Challengers Bangalore got hold of three big ticket overseas cricketers at this year’s auction in Glenn Maxwell, Kyle Jamieson and Daniel Christian. Together with the presence of AB de Villiers in the playing XI, RCB have four key foreign players in their ranks who add a lot of balance to their side. RCB will be hoping that two of their biggest purchases in Jamieson and Maxwell will set the stage on fire in the upcoming season while they have some very good replacement options like Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa, Daniel Sams and Finn Allen.
3. CSK overseas players – Faf du Plessis, Sam Curran, Moeen Ali and Lungi Ngidi
The three-time IPL winners Chennai Super Kings will be hoping for a complete turnaround of fortunes in the forthcoming edition of the tournament. CSK’s first choice overseas picks has to be Faf du Plessis, Sam Curran, Lungi Ngidi and Moeen Ali. However, Ngidi will not be available for the first few games as he will be with the South Africa ODI side for a series against Pakistan.
The CSK team management will have to ponder over the seam bowling options in Dwayne Bravo and Josh Hazlewood. Moeen makes a strong case for his inclusion in the playing XI with his excellent all-round abilities. Chennai also have their back-ups in veteran Imran Tahir and Mitchell Santner who could set into the scheme of things in the middle-phase of the tournament.
4. KKR overseas players – Eoin Morgan, Pat Cummins, Andre Russell and Shakib Al Hasan
The Kolkata Knight Riders will have their blue chip stocks in Eoin Morgan, Pat Cummins, Andre Russell and Shakib Al Hasan fit and ready for the upcoming IPL season. Although, KKR skipper Morgan sustained a finger injury during the recently concluded ODI series against India but he is likely to recover in time for the first game on April 11 against Sunrisers Hyderabad. KKR team management will have a very tough choice in picking one of Shakib and Sunil Narine but the former looks a certain starter due to his recent form. The two-time winners also have useful back-up options in Ben Cutting, Lockie Ferguson and Tim Seifert.
5. RR overseas players – Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Chris Morris and Andrew Tye
Jofra Archer’s injury is a huge setback for the Rajasthan Royals this season as he was the Most Valuable Player of the tournament last year. In his absence, the likes of Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Andrew Tye and Chris Morris will most likely start as the four overseas players in Rajasthan’s playing XI this season. RR will also be tempted to play Mustafizur Rahman in the eleven after the left-arm pacer received NOC from the Bangladesh Cricket Board. They also have Liam Livingstone and David Miller as the back-up overseas options while RR is yet to announce Archer’s replacement.
6. DC overseas players – Marcus Stoinis, Steve Smith, Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje
The IPL 2020 runners-up Delhi Capitals would have liked to start this season with two of their best bowlers in Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje but the duo will not be available for the first game on April 10. However, Marcus Stoinis and Steve Smith will definitely start in the playing XI alongside Tom Curran and Chris Woakes as the four overseas players. It will be difficult for them to leave out somebody like Shimron Hetmyer who is known for his attacking T20 cricket approach. Delhi also have a good back-up option in Sam Billings who has the ability to tonk big sixes towards the finish.
7. Punjab Kings overseas players – Nicholas Pooran, Dawid Malan, Chris Jordan and Jhye Richardson
The newly named Punjab Kings will most likely start with Dawid Malan, Nicholas Pooran, Chris Jordan and Jhye Richardson as their four foreign players for the upcoming IPL season. Jordan is likely to be preferred over Riley Meredith due to his superb death-bowling skills and experience of playing before in the league. Punjab will have a difficult choice in selecting one over Malan or Chris Gayle in the starting playing XI. They also have some great replacement options in Fabien Allen and Moises Henriques who are regarded as specialists in T20 cricket.
8. SRH overseas players – Rashid Khan, David Warner, Kane Williamson and Jason Holder
The Sunrisers Hyderabad will have the toughest time to choose their four overseas starters for the first game on April 11. However, skipper David Warner, Rashid Khan, Jason Holder and Kane Williamson are very likely to get a go in the opening phase of the tournament and this means swashbuckling batsman Jonny Bairstow will have to warm the bench. It will also be difficult for SRH to leave somebody like Mohammad Nabi from the playing XI as the Afghanistan all-rounder is known for his exploits in the shortest format. SRH also have decent back-up options like Mitchell Marsh and their newest recruit in mystery spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman.
India’s blockbuster T20 cricketing carnival will be returning home with Ahmedabad, Chennai, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Kolkata and Delhi as the hosting venues for IPL 2021. In order to ensure no team gets the home advantage, the BCCI has decided that all eight teams will play only on 4 venues out of the six listed, barring their home ground. The latest innovative format will also reduce the risk of the vast spread COVID-19 as the teams will be required to travel only three times during the league stage.
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