Overseas players have made a massive impression in the IPL over the years. The T20 tournament gives an opportunity for cricketers from all across the globe to play, learn and interact with each other. Youngsters from India get an opportunity to rub shoulders with the best overseas talent and vice versa. As we build-up to the latest edition of the IPL, here’s a look at five players from South Africa to watch out for.
1. AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers is undoubtedly the biggest name from South Africa to feature in the Indian Premier League (IPL). His incredible hitting range has made him a darling of Indian crowds over the years. This year, for the second season in a row, the IPL will be played without any fans as the threat of COVID-19 remains as big. Cricket lovers will have to enjoy de Villiers’ breathtaking stroke play from the comfort of their homes. Last season, de Villiers played some sensational knocks for RCB, lifting them to victory from grave situations. The franchise will expect nothing less from ABD this season.
AB de Villiers’ IPL stats: Matches – 169, Runs – 4849, SR – 151.91
2. Kagiso Rabada
The Proteas fast bowler has been the key to the Delhi Capitals’ success with the ball over the last couple of seasons. His pace and accuracy have kept the opposition on their toes more often than not. And we all know how lethal his yorkers can prove to be. Over the last two seasons, the pacer has been Delhi’s most successful bowler. In IPL 2019, he claimed 25 wickets in 12 matches at a strike rate of 11.28. Last season, he performed even better – 30 wickets in 17 games at a strike rate of 13.13 – as Delhi made the finals. He will be crucial to Delhi’s fortunes again.
Kagiso Rabada’s IPL stats: Matches – 35, Wickets – 61, SR – 13.18
3. Anrich Nortje
Anrich Nortje made an impressive IPL debut for Delhi Capitals last season and proved to be the perfect foil to Rabada. Hunting in a pair, Rabada-Nortje kept the opposition batsmen on their toes quite literally. Nortje bowled the fastest delivery in IPL history last season. Apart from being genuinely quick, he also possesses a deadly yorker, just like Rabada. In his debut IPL season, Nortje claimed 22 wickets in 16 matches and unsettled many big names, including Jos Buttler, with his pace.
Anrich Nortje’s IPL stats: Matches – 16, Wickets – 22, SR – 16.63
4. Quinton de Kock
To come in and make your mark in a champion side like Mumbai Indians is no mean feat. Over the last two seasons, Quinton de Kock has been brilliant for MI at the top of the order. In IPL 2019, he amassed 529 runs in 16 games at a strike rate of 132.91. Last season too, he produced similar figures. In 16 matches, he claimed 503 runs at a strike rate of 140.50. It wasn’t a coincidence that both times MI lifted the title. Of course, there were major contributions from others. But de Kock was undoubtedly among the standout performers.
Quinton de Kock’s IPL stats: Matches – 66, Runs – 1959, SR – 133.53
5. Chris Morris
Veteran South African all-rounder Chris Morris created history at the auction earlier this year as he was purchased for a record INR 16.25 crore by Rajasthan Royals. Morris is an effective pace bowler at the top of innings and also has good variations at the death. He is also a handy lower-order bat. Last season, he played for RCB and, after recovering from injury, claimed 11 wickets in nine games. He did not have much to do with the bat. Morris has the talent no doubt but he will have to perform sensationally well to justify his exorbitant price tag.
Chris Morris’ IPL stats: Matches – 70, Wickets – 80, SR – 18.42