Former Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan has returned to the field. ICC had suspended him for one year in 2019. He received the suspension after his failure to report a corrupt approach. Nevertheless, Shakib has returned now. He missed IPL 2020 because of the aforementioned suspension.
However, he will likely go under the hammer in IPL Auction 2021. Shakib Al Hasan is a match-winner in white-ball cricket. He is present in the Top 2 of the ICC T20I and ODI Rankings for all-rounders. His contributions have played a vital role in Bangladesh’s rise. In this article, we will have a look at the five teams that might target him in the auction.
5. Shakib Al Hasan might return to KKR
The Kolkata Knight Riders have two overseas spots open in their squad. They have struggled to perform well in the league stage of the last two years. KKR narrowly missed out on a playoff spot in IPL 2020. Eoin Morgan will lead the team this year. Shakib Al Hasan could be a great addition to their middle order.
In 2020, Andre Russell could not fire all cylinders. Also, Sunil Narine was not at his best. In case, any Caribbean all-rounder struggles this year, KKR will have a good back-up if they sign Shakib Al Hasan. Shakib has played for KKR before. Hence, he will be much aware of the pitch conditions at KKR’s home, Eden Gardens.
4. Sunrisers Hyderabad
The Sunrisers Hyderabad let go of Fabian Allen before IPL 2021 Auction. They need someone to fill up that position now. Mohammed Nabi is a decent option in the squad. However, someone like Shakib Al Hasan can add experience to the lineup. Last year, SRH had a very young middle-order.
Many of their batsmen have not played international cricket. So, it would be great if the franchise invests in Shakib’s services. Shakib could form an excellent partnership with Rashid Khan in the spin unit. Also, he could finish off the innings for SRH. His presence will give much more balance to the Orange Army.
3. Royal Challengers Bangalore
The Royal Challengers Bangalore released ten players before IPL 2021 Auction. They signed Daniel Sams and Harshal Patel in the trade window. However, they do not have enough options in the spin unit. After Moeen Ali’s release, RCB needs an overseas spin-bowling all-rounder. Shakib Al Hasan can do that job.
With Chris Morris released, RCB needs a finisher as well. Hence, Shakib could join Virat Kohli’s team. Shakib can bat after AB de Villiers. In the bowling attack, he can unite forces with Yuzvendra Chahal and Washington Sundar. His presence will give Virat more options. Thus, RCB might target Shakib Al Hasan.
2. Rajasthan Royals
The Rajasthan Royals have opened up an overseas slot by releasing Steve Smith. Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, and Jofra Archer will be the first-choice overseas players. For the fourth spot, David Miller is a top contender. However, Miller is a specialist batsman. An all-rounder would give more options in the bowling attack.
Thus, the Royals might try to sign Shakib Al Hasan. The Bangladeshi player has been successful in T20 cricket. He has featured in various T20 leagues. Also, RR needs someone who can bat well in the middle-order. Shakib Al Hasan could solve multiple issues for the Rajasthan Royals.
1. Kings XI Punjab
The Kings XI Punjab had a disastrous start to IPL 2020. However, they recovered from it. Later, they were among the top teams who could qualify for playoffs. Unfortunately, KXIP settled at the sixth position. Punjab released multiple all-rounders before IPL 2021 Auction.
They need more options in their spin attack and middle-order now. Shakib Al Hasan can do well in both departments. He has been a part of an IPL-winning side. This experience could help KXIP end their title drought. Thus, these are the five teams that might go after Shakib in IPL Auction.