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IPL 2021: From Avesh Khan to Chetan Sakariya, six uncapped Indian players who impressed Aakash Chopra

New Delhi, May 10: The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 was postponed by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) last Tuesday following the biosecure bubble breach and players testing positive for Covid-19.

Before the deadly pandemic hit the lucrative domestic T20 league, which was being held in India this year after the previous edition was organised in the UAE, 29 matches were held in all. The tournament - which is hailed as one of the biggest and most competitive T20 league in the world - witnessed some brilliant performances from the players, both domestic, as well as international.

IPL 2021 Special Page

Players from different franchises showcased their talent and skills and compelled the experts to take notice of their performance and praise them. The IPL is often credited to have greatly helped improve the quality of young Indian players and every season we get to see some of the domestic players even outperform the international stars. This year's IPL - whatever has happened - has also witnessed some uncapped Indian cricketers surprise one and all with their performance.

Former India opener-turned commentator Aakash Chopra is no different as he too seemed mighty impressed with the performances of six uncapped Indian players in the fourteenth edition of IPL.

Here are the six players whom Chopra praised:

1. Avesh Khan - Delhi Capitals

1. Avesh Khan - Delhi Capitals

The Delhi Capitals' pacer was in fine touch this season and the right-arm pacer from Madhya Pradesh didn't let the team feel the absence of international seamers like Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje. Chopra praised Avesh for his deliveries to dismiss Chennai Super Kings' Faf du Plessis and MS Dhoni.

"The first name I have written is Avesh Khan. He has impressed a lot this year because Nortje was not there and even Rabada was not there in the beginning. He bowled consistently well right from the first match where he struck Faf on the pads and MS Dhoni's stumps," Aakash Chopra told in his Youtube channel.

2. Harshal Patel - Royal Challengers Bangalore

2. Harshal Patel - Royal Challengers Bangalore

The second uncapped Indian player whom Chopra picked is Royal Challengers Bangalore all-rounder Harshal Patel. The Haryana cricketer picked up the most wickets in the tournament so far and has been nothing but a revelation this season.

Patel - who leads Haryana in the Ranji Trophy - showed superb control with the ball in this edition and his knack to bowl yorkers at will was simply brilliant.

"At No.2, I have kept Harshal Patel. He has taken the most wickets. He has worked on his slower ones, he has the loopy slower ones similar to Bumrah. He is bowling good yorkers, the pace has also increased slightly and bowled very accurately, just forget those 37 and 22-run overs," he added.

3. Devdutt Padikkal - Royal Challengers Bangalore

3. Devdutt Padikkal - Royal Challengers Bangalore

The 43-year-old cricketer-turned commentator picked up RCB opener Devdutt Padikkal as his third choice. If the left-handed Karnataka batsman gave a teaser of how good a batsman in the making in IPL 2020, Padikkal took his game to another level in IPL 2021. The talented batsman even slammed a century in the league as well.

Chopra added, "At No.3, I have again kept Devdutt Padikkal. He played just the one destructive huge knock but it was fantastic. You can see a different quality in this player. How many uncapped Indian players can say that they have scored a century? It is very very difficult but he has done that."

4. Harpreet Brar - Punjab Kings

4. Harpreet Brar - Punjab Kings

Chopra lauded the Punjab cricketer for his stupendous show with the bat as well as with the ball in his very first game of IPL 2021. Against a power-packed RCB batting line-up, Brar picked up the wickets of Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell and AB de Villiers to help his franchise Punjab Kings clinch a huge win.

"At No.4, Harpreet Brar. We all appreciated his bowling. If you take three wickets in a spell - Kohli, Maxwell and AB, and the next day when he came he hit Prithvi Shaw's stumps. I liked his batting a lot. He hit a few shots which showed he has the ability to play the big shots down the order."

5. Ravi Bishnoi - Punjab Kings

5. Ravi Bishnoi - Punjab Kings

The former India opener picked Punjab Kings' leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi at number five. The Rajasthan spinner didn't get success with the ball for he had to bowl with the wet ball which didn't help him but Bishnoi took some spectacular catches in the tournament.

"At No.5, I should go with Ravi Bishnoi. He took a couple of Superman catches. When he bowled, he had the wet ball on a couple of occasions. He didn't play all the matches, wasn't magical but was impressive," Chopra commented.

6. Chetan Sakariya - Rajasthan Royals

6. Chetan Sakariya - Rajasthan Royals

Chopra picked Rajasthan Royals' young left-arm quick Chetan Sakariya as his final choice. Chopra said Sakariya took everyone by surprise with his performance in his debut IPL season. He was impressed with the Saurashtra cricketer's temperament and technique.

"At No.6, the player's name is Chetan Sakaria. He took all of us by surprise. He is the real deal. How impressive he has been, he can make the ball go out and come in. He has both the back of the hand and a normal slower one. If you talk about temperament and technique, there is a lot to like about him," he concluded.

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Story first published: Monday, May 10, 2021, 15:39 [IST]
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