Young names in the IPL have a special footing than rest of the talent pool. Their selection is based on merit and their skills, demonstrated at various levels of professional cricket, opens a new door of sorts in the sport so loved. Some of them are picked from the domestic circuits, while some are recruited from U-19 level while the others are found through the scouting programs of the respective franchises. Among the many successful scouting programs happened from Mumbai Indians Camp, for which world cricket found Jasprit Bumrah while India found the go-to bowler at the death overs.
But in this new season with the IPL 2021 just a few hours away, who are the new breed of youngsters whose talent is all set to take centrestage?
VAIBHAV ARORA (KKR)
The medium pacer is on a roll with his brilliant form in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. The medium pacer became claimed a hat trick on debut and picked 29 wickets in 8 matches in the Ranji Trophy. For a team who have heavy weights in the pace department like Pat Cummins and Lockie Ferguson, Vaibhav is an ideal option to complete the link. He can be used both in the power plays and death overs so that the pace option with the KKR continues to be strengthened. The over dependence on these trans-Tasman pace duos will also be reduced and is the most reliable option to go with. His consistency, sharp lengths have reaped fruits, thus making him the next big cricketer in the making from the KKR camp.
ABDUL SAMAD (SRH)
Samad was backed by the Sunrisers last year as a middle-order batsman and a handy bowler.
The side are shaping him into becoming a reliable all-rounder for the Hyderabad setup. The 19-year-old needs work on his skills and consistency.
If at the top of the order, the SRH batting fails, the middle order has to get the job done. That’s where the team may want to factor in Samad for he has the ability to steer things forward and build an inning. He can strike big and accelerate towards the end of the innings; he batted at number #4 and steadied the innings to provide a base for the incoming batsmen to chase down the score in the past. SRH are in need of reliable middle order batsman to chase or post a good total.
Samad has improved on his stroke making ability and the strike rate over 150, which will aid his unit if in case the top order doesn’t fire. SRH are in search for established all-rounders, Samad as an upcoming player has a great opportunity to make it count.
SAM CURRAN (CHENNAI SUPER KINGS)
Sam Curran has always been revelation both with the bat and ball. Be it international performances or his recent IPL turnout, he kept progressing and his consistent form made him a go-to option for the captain. One aspect he could work is his bowling in the power play overs. He has not seen instant success while opening the innings but considering his latest success while batting down the order will give him a free hand to explode towards the end.
So whether it’s contributing in a run-chase or setting a competitive total up first- Curran’s got a clear task- to step up the game. He is a key player in the CSK setup and their revival in this season, one where there’s no Watto is also dependent on his all-round skills.
CHETAN SAKARIYA (RAJASTAN ROYALS)
The rise of Chetan Sakariya is no short of a miracle, he rose up the ranks with grit and determination. His latest stint at the Ranji Trophy showcased not only what he was capable of but what he could offer as a future potential. The rags-to-riches story is always inspiring, but Chetan has made headlines due to his performances, while the journey came second. His inclusion in the 2018-19 season of Ranji Trophy came by chance as their spearhead was injured. He made most of the opportunity that came his side and picked up almost 30 wickets. His stint continued with Saurashtra as they went on to win the title the next year, where Chetan continued his incredible success and paved a place in the side with his own credentials.
The present form and execution of the skills became a talking point of paramount importance. The left-arm pacer is known for his consistent breakthroughs, specifically the rhythm and kitty full of variations, thus making him the most sought after youngster from this list.
RAVI BISHNOI (PUNJAB KINGS)
The U-19 hero is still hunting for his next big turn-around and progression ato the International level. One can’t wait to see how he performs at the IPL 2021 having a strong band of domestic cricket experience.
For instance, Ravi is the seventh highest wicket getter in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Tournament, 2021 with 11 wickets at an average of 14.64. One reason for heavy reliance on Bishnoi is his recent track record in the domestic season. Punjab are in dire need of spinners, the onus will be on Ravi and Murgan Ashwin to turn things around.
So can he become the valued and key spinner in the Punjab Kings camp?
Youngsters should be well nourished, trained and shaped to be at the helm of the affairs. The IPL is a tournament that offers scope for domestic talent specifically youngsters to shine and cement their spot. This is not only a route for individual progress but also a stepping stone to the International arena. The future awaits these youngsters, while the present knocks and demands their skills to be executed with honesty. Let’s hope that the IPL 2021 can unfurl some truly amazing talent from all around.