IPL 2021: Wanindu Hasaranga hot favourite, 4 franchises targeting Sri Lankan spinner as a replacement: Sri Lankan spinner Wanindu Hasaranga shined at the right time just two months ahead of IPL 2021 Phase2. Being adjudged as ‘Man of the Series’ in T20I format against India, his sheer display of skills ahead of IPL has made him a target of at least 4 IPL franchisees in the absence of England players. As per information available with InsideSport, RCB, SRH, RR and PBKS are targetting the spinner.
In the just concluded T20I series against India, Hasaranga emerged bright with figures- economy- 5.58, wickets- 7 in the three matches he played. In the overall T20I career, the right-arm leg break has undertaken 33 scalps in 20 times he has featured for the Lankan side. He possesses an exceptional overall economy of 6.56.
Here at InsideSport, we analyze the four franchisees who would be having a hawk’s eye on the ace Lankan spinner.
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB)
Virat Kohli-led RCB will have large paws to pounce on Hasaranga in the second leg of the IPL. In the likely absence of Washington Sundar, who has suffered a finger injury, the franchisee would be vying for a spinner in the squad. Thus, Hasaraga, for them would be the right fit in the squad. As per rumours in Sri Lankan media, RCB have already approached the BCCI to get him as a replacement for Adam Zampa, who is also doubtful for IPL 2021 Phase 2.
IPL 2021: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR)
With Sunil Narine not in prime form and Shakib Al Hasan out of IPL 2021 Phase 2, Wanindu Hasaranga is the ideal target for Kolkata Knight Riders. The Sri Lankan spinner can bat, although not reliable, and can take advantage of slow wickets in the UAE.
Rajasthan Royals (RR)
RR Shreyas Gopal might just see himself axing from the side if their selectors have Hasaranga writ large in their mind. By stats and otherwise as well, the Lankan spinner has more disciplined bowling in his arms.
IPL 2021: Punjab Kings (PBKS)
Much like Gopal, Murugan Ashwin might just face an uncalled competition from Hasaranga provided the red brigade’s franchises have eyes set large on Sri Lanka’s leggie.
Not long ago, Sri Lankan legend Muttiah Muralitharan predicted his likely pick by the IPL franchisees. “IPL franchise should look at him. But the problem is if it’s a local player, he walks into the side. But if it’s a foreign player, you have to see which franchise wants a foreign spinner. It’s a tricky thing. They will buy him but playing him is something that will not be easy for a franchise. Because some franchises look mostly at Indian spinners rather than foreign spinners,” Muralitharan said in a chat on ESPNCricinfo.
The 49-year old Lankan player feels that it is just a matter of some matches for Hasaranga to etch a mark, soon after which he will become a regular face of the cash rick league. “He will get a launch and if he gets a game or two and performs, then he will be a regular player. He bowls well in T20s most of the time. In shorter games he is a very good bowler.”