As the IPL auction for the 13th edition of the league is just a few weeks away, all the IPL franchises would have started planning for the upcoming season. Since there is always a high demand of all-rounders in T20 cricket, New Zealand cricketer James Neesham can attract an expensive bid from the franchises.
Neesham had impressed with his performances in the 2019 Cricket World Cup and the succeeding Caribbean Premier League tournament. In CPL 2019, the Kiwi all-rounder was the highest wicket-taker from the Trinbago Knight Riders team with 11 wickets in 10 matches. He also contributed 75 runs to the team at a strike rate of 127.12.
In the 2019 World Cup, the left-handed batsman was the third highest run-getter for New Zealand with 232 runs in 10 matches. While with his right-arm medium pace, James had taken 15 wickets for his nation. Thus, he can prove to be a valuable commodity for a lot of IPL teams in the upcoming season.
In the article, let’s take a look at 3 teams which may target James Neesham in the IPL 2020 Auction –
Kings XI Punjab
Kings XI Punjab had committed a huge blunder by letting go Marcus Stoinis in the IPL trade window of 2018-19. The team had acquired the services of Mandeep Singh in exchange however, the Punjab-based player is not a proper all-rounder. Mandeep is is primarily a batsman who can bowl a few overs.
Hence, he was not a like-for-like replacement for Stoinis. Punjab then signed Moises Henriques and Sam Curran in the auction but just like Mandeep, both Henriques and Curran are not proper all-rounders. They have their specialization in just one department of the game and this deficiency hurt the team combination of Kings XI Punjab.
Hence, the team owners may look to release Henriques ahead of the auction and bring someone like James Neesham in the team who can provide a good amount of balance to the squad.
Delhi Capitals had emerged as one of the most improved teams in the twelfth edition of IPL. After changing the team’s name and jersey, the team management recruited Shikhar Dhawan in the squad during the trade window. This proved to be a game-changing move for Delhi as they had got a solid combination of Indian batsmen in their top order.
However, they lacked a quality all-rounder in the team as Chris Morris, Axar Patel and Keemo Paul did not live up to expectations. Also, Colin Ingram and Hanuma Vihari could not contribute much in the middle order. Thus, Delhi Capitals may look to boost their chances of winning IPL 2020 by going after James Neesham in the auction.
He can come to bat at number 6 in the batting order and can even bowl 4 overs of medium pace as per the team’s needs. Hence, he can be a resourceful option for skipper Shreyas Iyer.
Sunrisers Hyderabad received a massive blow when ICC imposed a ban on Shakib Al Hasan. Since the Bangladeshi captain was an integral part of the Hyderabad-based franchise, the team management will look to find a replacement for him in the auction. Also, the team does not have a quality fast-bowling all-rounder in the squad apart from Vijay Shankar.
Thus, Trevor Bayliss and co. should target James Neesham in the auction. As Neesham has played a lot of cricket with the Sunrisers captain, Kane Williamson, he will prove to be an extremely beneficial addition to the Sunrisers Hyderabad team.
Neesham could finish off the games for Hyderabad besides taking wickets at crucial junctures. All in all, he can solve a lot of problems for the 2016 IPL winners.
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