The land of South Africa has produced several quality cricketers, who not only won laurels for the country but went onto dominate different T20 leagues around the world. These include batsmen who have scored close to 10,000 runs in international cricket and bowlers who hurled the ball at a lightning pace which was close to 150 kmph. The naturally gifted athletic body and unique abilities that they possessed made them a hot property featuring in various T20 franchises and it is to be noted that they never failed to impress and leave their stellar mark on the game.
Inspite of the obnoxious off-field turmoil, the South African cricketers left it all aside and turned up with positive intent and mindset at IPL 2020. The majority of them lived up to their enormous expectations and performed brilliantly under pressure providing their side with the psychological edge. A few of their displays were so impeccable and remarkable that they ended up featuring at the top with respect to different cricketing stats for the season. It is indeed a satisfying reality that no competition is complete without these star African players, who bring their own flavour and flair to the reputed leagues of the world.
Given their star status and consistent performances over the years, a few of these players are bound to be retained come any auction and now form the member of the solid core every franchise craves for. But being a cricket fanatic, we haven’t been spared by the thought of them ever being released and the possible repercussions of the same. It is obvious that they would attract exorbitant bids from the owners and find themselves amidst a bidding war. In the below piece, we look at 5 such South African players, who will find themselves in high demand if released ahead of the 2022 mega auction:
1. Kagiso Rabada
This muscular, sturdy, express quick bowler is indeed the heart and soul of the Capitals lineup, who earns INR 4.2 crore for his service. Rabada was one of the major factors, who helped DC reach their first final and almost took them the distance.
In the 17 fixtures that he was part of, Rabada scalped 30 wickets at an average of 18.26 and an economy rate of 8.34. As a token of appreciation for the same, he was bestowed with the deemed ‘purple cap’ and was looked at in high regards.
2. Anrich Nortje
Nortje was a surprise revelation at IPL 2020 for DC, who rattled opposition timbre with his lightning pace and incredible accuracy. He was either short or fuller and given his brisk speed, was detrimental while executing both the lengths. He was indeed batsmen’s worst nightmare at the tournament.
The ‘fast and furious’ pacer got the better of 22 batsmen at an average of 23.27 and an economy rate of 8.39. His spell of 3-33 against RR where he recorded the fastest ball ever bowled in the IPL history i.e. at 156 kmph was one of the highlights during the recent edition of IPL.
Nortje earns INR 50 lakhs for his wholehearted service towards the franchise.
3. Quinton de Kock
De Kock was the mainstay for MI at the top of the order and the credit for the same has to go to skipper Rohit, who stood strongly behind him when the runs weren’t coming off his bat in the initial few encounters.
The wicketkeeper-batsman piled up 503 runs from 16 games at an average of 35.92 and a fabulous strike rate of 140.50. His aggressive, brisk starts helped MI procure momentum early on and dominate the proceedings throughout.
He was safe as houses behind the stumps grabbing all the opportunities and not missing out on any stumping chance either. He was indeed a prized possession for the team, who availed his services through a rather unexpected trade-off with the RCB. De Kock earns INR 2.8 crore as a token of appreciation for the same.
4. David Miller
‘Killer Miller’ unfortunately didn’t get enough opportunities to make a statement for his new franchise, RR. The presence of star England batsmen like Buttler and Stokes kept him away from contention into playing XI and we saw him warming the benches for the entire course of the tournament.
He did feature in the opening fixture for RR but was run-out for a duck owing to a rocket throw from the deep by youngster Gaikwad, playing against CSK. Miller’s overall IPL record is very illustrative where the swashbuckler has slammed 1850 runs from 80 games at an average of 33.63 and strike rate of 138.7. Miller was snapped by the Royals for INR 75 lakhs.
5. Faf du Plessis
The former South African captain was one of the shining lights for CSK opening the innings in an otherwise forgettable season. On the majority of occasions, we saw du Plessis waging a lone battle against the opposition and keeping his team in the hunt till the very end. Had the star batsman found some support at the other end, things would have been drastically different for the former champions.
Du Plessis blasted 449 runs from 13 games at an average of 40.81 and a wonderful strike rate of 140.75. The free-flow with the bat was a huge indication of his stellar batsmanship and warning to the opposition that there is a lot left in him before he calls it to quit. CSK bought him for INR 1.6 crore. Recently Du Plessis retired from the test cricket to focus on his T20 Game.