Opinion

IPL7: Don’t underestimate the power of the young-brigade

c@cricket77.com

Every season, we get to a new pool of young, exciting domestic cricketers, but these young guns are often under-utilised by the teams. Over the years, IPL has been a tournament that is dominated mostly by the “big names.” But, this year, we saw a little change in the partner. Young lads like Sanju Sampson and Manan Vohra, were retained by Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab respectively.

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Most of the IPL teams have foreign coaches, and it’s important for the support staff to share the information about the domestic talent. Players like Sanju Sampson, Manan Vohra, Sandeep Sharma, Mandeep Singh, Manoj Tiwary and many others have shown the value of promoting the young talent.

Teams like Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals have been proactive in identifying the young talent, and this approach has been very beneficial for them. Pavinder Awana, who came was brilliant for Kings in the last season, is a find of Kings XI Punjab’s academy. Awana’s raw pace impressed one and all in the last season, and on the basis of his good performances, Kings used their Joker card to retain him.

Till the last season, Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab were said to be the “misers” of the tournament. And, this is precisely why their focus has been on finding the young talent. Big IPL teams like Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), Mumbai Indians (MI) and Kolkata Knight riders (KKR) have always relied on big names. But, wherever they have promoted the young or domestic cricketers, they have looked stronger.

Rajat Bhatia was instrumental for KKR in the 5th season of IPL. Likes of Jasprit Bumrah and Rishi Dhawan made valuable contributions to the Mumbai Indians’ side, in the last season. Mayank Agarwal, was a consistent performer for the RCB, till the last season.

In the last season, Karan Sharma of Sunrisers Hyderabad, had a brilliant season and became one of the favourites in the auction-room, this year.

OUR ADVICE 

Teams must identify the young batsmen and give them a chance at the top to express themselves. •

Indian domestic circuit is full of talented spinners, and in the conditions where spinners get assistance, these spinners can be very handy. •

If the “big names” are failing consistently, teams should have the courage to drop them. Virender Sehwag is horribly out of touch and players like Manan Vohra and Mandeep Singh are sitting in the dugout. If Sehwag keeps failing, then Punjab must drop him. Manan and Mandeep played brilliantly in the last season, and they shouldn’t ignored for a player who is clearly struggling in the middle.

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