IPL 2022: Predicting first-choice overseas players for SRH

SRH had a terrible IPL 2021 season.

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Sunrisers Hyderabad

Sunrisers Hyderabad. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

Sunrisers Hyderabad
Sunrisers Hyderabad. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) had a poor outing in the 2021 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) as they finished last and this year, the franchise has redrawn its planning to find a better season. They bought a number of players in the mega auction of the 2022 edition held in Bengaluru in February besides retaining three players, including captain Kane Williamson. They also purchased Nicholas Pooran for INR 10.75 crore.

For the 2016 champions, management of the overseas players could be a challenge in this year’s edition. Including Williamson, the SRH have eight foreign players, all of whom are capable of bringing different elements of skill to the game.

Here, we will predict SRH’s four best foreign players’ choice for IPL 2022

1. Kane Williamson

Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

The New Zealand captain will be an integral part of the SRH’s playing XI since he is the franchise’s captain. Hyderabad retained Williamson for a whopping INR 14 crore and despite occasional injuries, he has remained the side’s most important pillar of strength. The classical batter has scored plenty of runs for Hyderabad and also guided them to the final in the 2018 edition.

In 63 matches since making his IPL debut in 2015, Williamson has scored 1,885 runs at an average of 40 plus and strike-rate of 131.26 with the highest score of 89.

Hyderabad spin-bowling coach Muttiah Muralidharan has confirmed that Williamson will open innings in the 2022 edition with Abhishek Sharma. Even though Williamson was not in his best touch in the 2021 edition, he is the best batter on his side and it would want him to bat for the maximum overs in the hunt for competitive totals.

2. Nicholas Pooran

Nicholas Pooran
Nicholas Pooran. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The talented West Indian southpaw had a forgetful IPL 2021 but in the recent T20 international series against India, he excelled in each game even though the Caribbeans lost all the matches.

Hyderabad will look to make the most of his potential by sending him to bat at No.3. That will help him assess the conditions well before he starts playing big shots. Pooran is a relatively new player in the IPL with just three seasons under his belt. In 33 matches so far, he has scored 606 runs at an average of 22.44 and a strike rate of 154 plus with the highest score of 77. At 26, Pooran has already played more than 200 T20 matches which means the man really knows the format inside out.

The SRH management will hope that Pooran proves to be consistent with the bat. Speaking on him, Muralidharan recently said that the franchise is confident about Pooran’s ability and that he was sold for a whopping price proves that the demand for him was high among the franchises. If Pooran gets going this season, then Hyderabad’s batting will be a cause of concern for all opponents.

3. Aiden Markram

Aiden Markram
Aiden Markram. (Photo Source: Twitter/IPL)

Aiden Markram has just made his debut in the IPL and in six matches he played in the UAE leg of the tournament in 2021, he scored 146 runs at an average of 29.20 and strike rate of 122.68.

The right-handed opening batter from South Africa, however, is a more experienced player in the shortest format than what his IPL figures suggest. In 70 matches, he has scored 1,732 runs at an average of 32.07 and strike rate of almost 129 and has slammed 14 half-centuries. In T20 internationals, he has an impressive strike rate of 147. In ICC T20I rankings, Markram is at No.3. Along with Pooran, he can bring a lot of power to the SRH ranks.

Last year, Markram initially went unsold in the auction but after Dawid Malan made himself unavailable for the UAE leg of the tournament, the Punjab Kings picked him as the replacement. This year, Hyderabad bought him for INR 2.6 crore to give more stability to their middle-order. Markram though did not get to prove himself in the 2021 edition but the 27-year-old is certainly a technically sound and composed one who can also bowl off-break when needed. In the ICC all-rounders’ rankings for the T20Is, too, Markram features in the top 10.

4. Marco Jansen

Marco Jansen
Marco Jansen. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

Besides picking some hard-hitting batters, Hyderabad have also focused on their bowling department with care. While there are T Natarajan and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, both of whom have played a key role in SRH’s success in the past, the franchise has also roped in tall South African left-arm seamer Marco Jansen for Rs 4.2 crore besides Australian pacer Sean Abbott for INR 2.4 crore.

The 21-year-old Jansen made his debut in the 2021 season for Mumbai Indians but got to play only two matches in which he picked only two wickets but impressed with his skills. In the recently held home series against India, too, Jansen generated some serious pace and showed aggression, and bagged 19 2wickets in three matches. He also picked nine wickets in the away Test series against New Zealand.

The pacer can prove to be an asset for SRH and replace their former star performer Mustafizur Rahman. Jansen is one who has been picked with a lot of calculation so that the SRH live up to their fans’ expectations again as a decent bowling force.

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