The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) has often boasted of some of the best players in its squad. They have got the world’s best in the likes of Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and a couple of other players. However, the team has never won the Indian Premier League (IPL) to date.
Often, it is the auction that makes or breaks a team. For several seasons now, RCB hasn’t been able to crack the IPL auction formula. As a result, they have always failed to get the right set of combinations. The management has invested a lot on the batsmen in the past and in the process, completely ignored the bowlers. There have been a few corrective measures for some time now. Yet, it would have been great had RCB got some of the unsold players in its squad.
Here are five unsold players RCB could have bought:
1. Mushfiqur Rahim
He might be a man of small stature but Mushfiqur Rahim is an impactful player. The Bangladesh veteran is a great option to have in any side. But given that most of the teams are sorted with their wicket-keeping option, he remained unsold once again.
For RCB though, he could have been a great choice. The Royal Challengers Bangalore could have batted Mushfiqur Rahim at number four or five and he could have even kept wickets, paving the way Virat Kohli and Aaron Finch to open the innings. AB de Villiers would have come in at number three.
Then, they could have slotted Rahim in the middle-order to add more balance to the team and strengthen the middle order. At four, someone like Shivam Dube then would have been a great choice. He could’ve been given the freedom to play his shots and that might have been of great advantage for RCB.
2. Andile Phehlukwayo
Ever heard of hitting two shots with one bullet? This statement would have become true had RCB picked South Africa’s Andile Phehlukwayo in its squad. The all-rounder has been playing some quality cricket in recent times.
For South Africa and in the MSL, he has often been handed more responsibility with the bat and was sent out at number three or four at times. RCB could have taken a leaf out of these experiences and got Phehlukwayo on-board. In the middle-order, he could have been a good option.
Moreover, he has got some great variations with the ball and is street-smart. Phehlukwayo can operate at the death which is a huge demand for RCB. Compared to some of the other bowlers, he could have bowled much better overs for the side.
3. Angelo Mathews
There is no substitute for experience and CSK proved why in the last couple of seasons. But when you look at RCB’s middle-order, there is a lot of inexperience. In the past, this issue has given them a lot of troubles.
Despite getting good starts, the team lost its way due to poor batting by the middle-order batsmen. Thus, that is definitely an area of concern and it would have been great to see RCB make a reliable pick here. When you look at the options, Angelo Mathews is one name that you should surely consider.
Mathews can adapt his game according to different situations in the match and is capable of playing the big shots. Moreover, he can possibly give the team a couple of overs when required. This additional option with the ball will give any side a lot of flexibility.
4. Ricky Bhui
If you look at the Indian options, the likes of Ricky Bhui or Dhruv Shorey would have been great. These cricketers have been performing really well at the domestic level and have scored a lot of runs. Possibly, giving them an extended run in the middle order might have been great for these youngsters.
Also, the prospect of sharing the dressing room with someone like Virat Kohli is in itself a great chance. Earlier, Ricky Bhui was associated with the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) for a long time. However, he failed to get many opportunities in the IPL.
The 23-year-old played in 41 T20 games thus far in his career. He scored 876 runs at a decent average of 29.20 and a good strike rate of 130.35. Bhui also enjoys playing the big shots and clearing the fence.
5. G Periyasamy
Hailing from a small village in Tamil Nadu, Ganeshan Periyasamy defied several odds to be the cricketer that he is today. For someone who has only played with tennis for a majority of his childhood, switching to the white-ball and escalating up the ranks so quick is inspirational.
With a slingy bowling action like Lasith Malinga, he has troubled several batsmen. He nails the yorkers and is one of the most exciting prospects who emerged from the TNPL. In the final of the tournament this year, he picked up a five-wicket haul to help his team defend 126 runs.
He finished the season with 21 wickets – the most by any bowler in a single TNPL season. Yet, none of the franchises seemed interested in him. RCB might have had a great Indian bowling option had they bought him.
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