Former India batsman Virender Sehwag opined that Sri Lanka spinner Wanindu Hasaranga will get a call-up from multiple IPL franchises to join them as a replacement player for the second half of the IPL 2021.
Since several Australian and English players are likely to pull out of the UAE leg of the IPL 2021, which is scheduled to commence from September 19, due to international commitment or bio-bubble toll on their mental and physical health right before the T20 World Cup, the IPL franchises would be eyeing Wanindu Hasaranga as a replacement player after his brilliant performances against India.
In fact, it has been reported that the Royal Challengers Bangalore has already approached the BCCI requesting the services of the Sri Lankan all-rounder for Adam Zampa, who had pulled out of the season during its first half along with pacer Kane Richardson.
Virender Sehwag said that Wanindu Hasaranga had done loads of good to his chances of getting an IPL contract by performing well against India and now has the eyeballs of the IPL franchises.
“He bowled brilliantly. And the two wickets he took in the middle – of Sanju Samson and Ruturaj Gaikwad – broke India’s back. I think there was some news that Hasaranga is targeting a few IPL teams as a replacement player,” Virender Sehwag told Cricbuzz.
“I mean he was hoping for something like that and he proved himself… it doesn’t get bigger than this. Those who would be thinking of picking him would be saying ‘we need to talk to him’ and get him as a replacement player. He delivered the right performance at the right time,” he added.
If someone needs a spinner Wanindu Hasaranga could be the guy: Ashish Nehra
The leg-spinner snapped 7 wickets in the 3 T20Is against India, with a best of 4/9 in the third match, bagging the Player of the Series award, and helping his side make a comeback in the series after being 1-0 down. He was extremely challenging to tackle for the young and inexperienced Indian batters, outsmarting them with his clever variations.
The 24-year-old also has a decent amount of hitting ability – as he showed on the tour to England with scores of 54, 26, and 20 in the ODIs
Former India fast bowler Ashish Nehra echoed Sehwag’s opinion by stating that the Number 2 ICC-ranked T20I bowler should be able to get an IPL franchise and would be a boost to other Sri Lankan players.
“Only time will tell which franchise needs a replacement. But if there are discussions, and someone needs a spinner – he (Hasaranga) could be the guy. If a player plays for a year and a half, he is considered a senior player in T20Is. He is the No. 2 ranked T20I bowler, although I do not believe much in rankings,” Nehra said.
“Not too many Sri Lankan are playing the IPL and if you talk about the India vs Sri Lanka series, Hasaranga has shown a lot of positives. Even Shanaka sent Hasaranga ahead of himself in batting.”