We have already completed 25 matches in the ongoing edition of Vivo Indian Premier League’s (IPL) season eleven and in the process, we have also witnessed some fascinating games.
Chennai Super Kings are sitting at the top of the IPL 2018 points table at the moment with five victories from six matches. Kings XI Punjab has also played some exceptional brand of cricket so far.
Under the newly-appointed skipper Ravichandran Ashwin, Punjab has won five out of seven matches they have played in the tournament so far.
Meanwhile, Mumbai Indians and Delhi Daredevils are at the bottom of the points table with just a solitary victory from six games respectively. The teams in form have kept faith in their players and have gone for the more or less same team on most of the occasions.
However, there have been several chopping and changing especially for the Delhi Daredevils.
In addition, There are several players from all eight franchises who are yet to get an opportunity in the tournament.
So here is a look at the probable Benched XI after the first 25 matches of the tournament:
The stylish southpaw Manjot Kalra was bought by the Delhi Daredevils for his base price of INR 20 lakhs. He made his mark during the Under-19 World Cup earlier in the year.
The promising batsman smashed a sensational century in the all-important World Cup Final which eventually handed the Indian Junior team their overall fourth World Cup title.
It was a brilliant knock and came at a crucial time. He looked in complete command of proceedings. However, he hasn’t got his chance so far and might well get a look at in the next few matches.
Delhi has to make a turnaround very soon and Kalra might get a chance. It will be special to see if Prithvi Shaw and Manjot get a chance to bat together.
Murali Vijay was bought by the Chennai Super for Kings for INR 2 crore in this year’s auction.
Vijay was an integral part of Super King set up in the earlier edition. He has also smashed a couple of centuries for his team in the past.
However, he hasn’t got enough chances in this edition so far. With Ambati Rayudu and Shane Watson doing the job for CSK at the top of the order, the return of Vijay looks bleak after getting a solitary game this season.
The wicket-keeper batsman Parthiv Patel was bought for INR 1.7 crore by the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
However, captain, Virat Kohli has not given him a chance in the playing XI till now.
Patel’s experience might come in handy for Bangalore. He came into the international circuit way back in 2002.
But, after the emergence of a certain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, his career along with other wicket-keepers has been cut short. He has played a couple of Tests recently as the replacement of Wriddhiman Saha.
The English all-rounder Moeen Ali was also bought by the Royal Challengers. He is truly an asset to any team. However, his form in the recent past has been a concern which hasn’t really given Kohli that assurance of including him the playing XI.
However given the sort of performances, RCB has put in the tournament so far, Moeen might have a look in pretty soon.
Sachin Baby was part of the Bangalore squad in the last three editions of the tournament, He is a useful middle-order batsman and has the ability to strike some lusty blows.
He was bought for his base price of INR 20 lakh by the Sunrisers Hyderabad. He is likely to be benched all through the tournament especially given the fact that Hyderabad has been in some good winning form.
The left-arm spinner and an able lower middle-order batsman, Anukul Roy was a find for the Indian junior team during their triumphant campaign earlier in the year in New Zealand.
Roy was the highest wicket-taker in the tournament for India. He also chipped in with some useful runs in the lower middle-order.
In the final, it was his two crucial wickets which turned the match in favour of India.
The youngster was bought for INR 55 lakh by the three-time champions Mumbai Indians. Despite having a solid team, Mumbai has been quite below par in this tournament so far.
Dhillon is a hard-hitting middle-order batsman and also bowl right arm off breaks. He has been benched in this tournament so far. However, with the form Mumbai has been in, he might get a look in.
Rahul Chahar was bought by the Mumbai Indians for a whopping INR 1.9 crore.
However, he is yet to get a game in the tournament so far. His inclusion looks bleak especially given the fact that another leggie Mayank Markande has been quite exceptional for Mumbai in the tournament so far.
Rahul’s brother Deepak Chahar has been quite phenomenal for the Super Kings.
The former left-arm pacer from Australia was picked by the Knight Riders for INR two crore. Especially after the injury to Mitchell Starc which ruled him out of the tournament, Johnson emerged as the spearhead of the attack.
However, he was dropped from the team after playing only a solitary match. He couldn’t make a mark and thus found the list of Benched XI.
The speedster looks unlikely to make a return unless Tom Curran performs poorly through the course of the tournament.
The New Zealand fast bowler Tim Southee might well find himself a spot in the playing XI of RCB during their next encounter. He is not a typical T20 bowler but is certainly way better than a Corey Anderson or a Mohammed Siraj.
Southee might well prove to be the answer to the death bowling woes of Bangalore.
Despite his ability to swing the ball both ways and trouble the batsmen with his pace, he is yet to play a match in this edition so far.
The fast bowler Lungi Ngidi was bought by the Super Kings for his base price INR 50 lakh.
In a team consisting of superstars and experienced campaigner, Ngidi hasn’t been able to break into the playing XI.
Given the form, CSK is in, and listed among the Benched XI, Ngidi is unlikely to get a look in anytime soon.
However, he is an exceptional prospect in the making and could turn out to be a potent weapon for Chennai in the coming years.