The Indian Premier League has given birth to a number of stars right from its first season in 2008. Cricketers like Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma all emerged into the spotlight with consistent performances in the Indian T20 league and are now dominating international cricket.
Talented youngsters from across the globe had been picked by different franchises for the IPL 2020 as well. However, they were unable to showcase their skills earlier this year due to the Coronavirus pandemic. But with the edition all set to commence from September 19 in the United Arab Emirates, the players will have a fine opportunity to perform and give a proof of their talent against some of the best players.
Here are three debutants who can make a mark in the upcoming tournament.
Tom Banton (Kolkata Knight Riders) –
The right hander impressed with a stellar showing in the Big Bash League earlier this year where he turned out for the Brisbane Heat. Scoring 223 runs in just seven innings with a high score of 64 at a strike rate of a whopping 177, the Englishman impressed with his wide array of attacking shots. Though he has been unable to replicate his form in T20 internationals – he averages 18.66 in three games – he has a strike rate of 164.70 for England, which is evidence of his prowess.
Banton stroke play and his temperament came to the fore during the Vitality T20 Blast last year, when he smashed 549 runs in 13 innings with the help of a hundred at a strike rate of 161.47. It made him a much sought after player in the IPL auctions last December, where he was eventually picked up by Kolkata Knight Riders for his base price of INR 1 crore.
The fact that Banton also provides an option as a wicket-keeper further makes him an all-round star.
Yashasvi Jaiswal (Rajasthan Royals) –
From selling pani-puris and sleeping in tents to having a dream run at the Under-19 World Cup held in South Africa earlier this year, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s story is inspirational and heart-warming. Amassing 400 runs in the tournament with the help of four successive fifty-plus scores, the Indian ended as the leading run-scorer. He also picked up regular wickets with his right-arm off spinners, which can be quite a handful on the dry wickets in the UAE.
The youngest ever cricketer from India to score a double ton in List A, Jaiswal was embroiled in an intense auction bid that saw his price jump from INR 20 lakhs to INR 2.4 crores. He was eventually snapped up by Rajasthan Royals, and will be eager to justify his price tag with a fine showing.
R Sai Kishore (Chennai Super Kings) –
Emerging into the limelight after a fabulous domestic season for Tamil Nadu last year, R Sai Kishore might just be the most underrated buy in the IPL auctions for this year. A product of the Tamil Nadu Premier League, Kishore was unlucky to have been unsold in 2019 but his recent exploits meant that he was bought by Chennai Super Kings for the 2020 season.
The youngster ended the 2019 season of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy as the highest wicket-taker with 20 wickets, conceding just 4.63 runs in 12 games. The left-arm spinner also picked 15 of his 20 wickets in the powerplay overs, and with CSK skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni often bowling a slow bowler upfront, Kishore can be a dark horse.
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