back icon

News

Impact Player: Three teams that could struggle

article_imageTRENDS ANALYSIS
Last updated on 23 Mar 2023 | 10:20 AM
Follow Us
Impact Player: Three teams that could struggle

With not a lot of potent backups, can these teams leverage the Impact Player rule?

Kolkata Knight Riders

Potential XI

Rahmanullah Gurbaz (WK), Venkatesh Iyer, Nitish Rana, Mandeep Singh, Andre Russell, Rinku Singh, Shardul Thakur, Sunil Narine, Umesh Yadav, Lockie Ferguson, Varun Chakaravarathy

Potential Impact Subs

Anukul Roy, Harshit Rana, N Jagadeesan, Vaibhav Arora

Potential Scenarios

Bat First

A dismissed batter can be subbed for:

•    N Jagadeesan to arrest a collapse or lengthen their batting lineup

•    Anukul Roy to provide some late innings impetus

•    Vaibhav Arora/Harshit Rana, as a powerplay specialist

Bowl First

After his spell, a bowler can be subbed out for:

•    N Jagadeesan to arrest a collapse or lengthen their batting lineup

•    Anukul Roy to provide lower-order firepower 

KKR’s problems begin with their XI. Their first XI lacks the explosiveness that we saw in KKR teams of the past. In the top-order, Rahmanullah Gurbaz is their only bet against high pace and hard lengths. With the kind of surfaces Kolkata has produced in the recent past, this top-order will struggle against pace heavy bowling attacks. Also, they lack domestic backups to plug the gap created by Shreyas Iyer's unavailability.

Their domestic backups mainly include IPL discards. So, there are hardly any effective options for them to make use of. In fact, they entered the auction with good new ball bowlers, the only phase they had options for, and still ended up with Vaibhav Arora, someone known for his ability to move the new ball.

Their over dependence on Andre Russell will haunt them this season as well. Since last IPL, Russell has bowled around 2.5 overs/innings in various other franchise leagues, and has gone at around 10 RPO. With IPL going back to the home/away format, it’s hard to see Russell finding success as a death bowler this time around.

Punjab Kings

Potential XI

Shikhar Dhawan (C), Prabhsimran Singh (WK), Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Liam Livingstone, Jitesh Sharma, Shahrukh Khan, Sam Curran, Kagiso Rabada, Rahul Chahar, Vidwath Kaverappa, Arshdeep Singh

Potential Impact Subs

Atharva Taide, Harpreet Bhatia, Harpreet Brar, Rishi Dhawan 

Potential Scenarios

Bat First

A dismissed batter can be subbed for:

•    Atharva Taide/Harpreet Bhatia to arrest a collapse or lengthen their batting lineup

•    Rishi Dhawan, as a lower-order batter and powerplay bowler

•    Harpreet Brar to bowl to favorable matchups 

Bowl First

A bowler can be subbed for:

•    Harpreet Brar to bowl to favorable matchups or lengthen their batting lineup (phase specialist)

•    Atharva Taide/Harpreet Bhatia to arrest a collapse or anchor a chase against favorable matchups 

In their XI, Jonny Bairstow's unavailability means that PBKS will struggle to construct a batting lineup with proven quality. Their bowling looks good on paper, but Sam Curran is coming off a poor SA20 and a poorer Bangladesh tour, and Kagiso Rabada hasn’t had a good IPL in over two years. Also, they don’t have a lot of quality spinners who would make the XI regularly.

To make matters worse, they don’t seem to have like-for-like domestic backups for most roles. Most of their bowlers bowl across phases, so they will have to make some tough calls to use a bowler as an Impact Player. In batting, their domestic backups are fairly unidimensional in that they are all anchor-type players. If Jitesh Sharma and Shahrukh Khan do not perform regularly, they will not be able to do much about strengthening their lower-order.

Rajasthan Royals

Potential XI

Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Devdutt Padikkal, Riyan Parag, Sanju Samson (C & WK), Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder, R Ashwin, Trent Boult, Yuzvendra Chahal, Sandeep Sharma*

*While not confirmed yet, news from the RR camp is that they have signed Sandeep Sharma as Prasidh Krishna's replacement.

Potential Impact Subs

Dhruv Jurel, KC Cariappa, Kuldeep Sen, Navdeep Saini

Potential Scenarios

Bat First

A dismissed batter can be subbed for:

•    Dhruv Jurel to arrest a collapse or lengthen their batting lineup

•    KC Cariappa/Navdeep Saini to bowl to favorable matchups

•    Kuldeep Sen, a middle/death overs specialist can be brought in for Sandeep Sharma after his new ball spell.

Bowl First

A bowler can be subbed for:

•    Navdeep Saini/KC Cariappa to bowl to favorable matchups (phase specialist)

•    Dhruv Jurel to arrest a collapse or anchor a chase against favorable matchups 

RR’s first XI is potent. However, if Sanga stays true to his word of promoting Parag up the order, #3 - #5 will all have batters playing out of their usual position. There is also the existing issue of a lack of depth in their batting and bowling. They have eight batters and three #11s in their batting lineup. When it comes to bowling, they have six options, the part-time spin of Parag being the sixth.

Ideally, this is the kind of XI that is best suited to make use of an Impact Player. But, RR’s heavy spending on their first XI means that they hardly have any backups with proven quality at this level. Outside Murugan Ashwin and Navdeep Saini, their backups (domestic and international) have cumulatively played less than 30 IPL games.

Sandeep Sharma's arrival would go a long way in strengthening their bowling attack. Sandeep Sharma can move the ball prodigiously and could form a lethal duo with Trent Boult. Post his new ball spell, he can be subbed out for Kuldeep Sen, who has proved in the previous season that he has the goods to deliver in the final four at this level.

Related Article

Loader