Winter might be coming in Australia but the cricket action continues throughout the seasons this year as we head into a six month stretch that sees the IPL, ICC World Cup and the Ashes set to be played!
The Indian Premier League is quickly becoming one of the most important cricket competitions in the world and there will be plenty of Aussies in action when the tournament gets underway on the 24th of March! We take a look at the top contenders this season and give our betting tips below!
Overseas players in bold.
Channai Super Kings
MS Dhoni(captain), Suresh Raina, Faf du Plessis, Murali Vijay, Sam Billings, Ambati Rayudu, Dhruv Shorey, N Jagadeesan, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shane Watson, Ravindra Jadeja, Dwayne Bravo, David Willey, Kedar Jadhav, Chaitanya Bishnoi, Harbhajan Singh, Karn Sharma, Imran Tahir, Mitchell Santner, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar, Lungi Ngidi, Mohit Sharma, KM Asif, Monu Kumar.
Shreyas Iyer(captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant, Prithvi Shaw, Colin Munro, Ankush Bains, Colin Ingram, Axar Patel, Harshal Patel, Manjot Kalra, Chris Morris, Keemo Paul, Sherfane Rutherford, Jalaj Saxena, Amit Mishra, Rahul Tewatia, Sandeep Lamichhane, Trent Boult, Kagiso Rabada, Avesh Khan, Ishant Sharma, Nathu Singh, Bandaru Ayyappa
Ajinkya Rahane(captain), Steven Smith, Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson, Prashant Chopra, Manan Vohra, Aryaman Birla, Rahul Tripathi, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Stuart Binny, Shreyas Gopal, Krishnappa Gowtham, Shashank Singh, Liam Livingstone, Shubham Ranjane, Ashton Turner, Riyan Parag, Mahipal Lomror, Ish Sodhi, Jaydev Unadkat, Dhawal Kulkarni, Varun Aaron, Oshane Thomas, Sudhesan Midhun
Rohit Sharma(captain), Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Yuvraj Singh, Anmolpreet Singh, Aditya Tare, Siddhesh Lad, Evin Lewis, Quinton de Kock, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Pankaj Jaiswal, Anukul Roy, Kieron Pollard, Ben Cutting, Mayank Markande, Rahul Chahar, Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah, Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam Milne, Jason Behrendorff, Barinder Sran, Rasikh Salam, Jayant Yadav
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Virat Kohli(captain), AB de Villiers, Parthiv Patel, Shimron Hetmyer, Devdutt Padikkal, Heinrich Klaasen, Himmat Singh, Yuzvendra Chahal, Marcus Stoinis, Colin de Grandhomme, Moeen Ali, Pawan Negi, Washington Sundar, Shivam Dube, Milind Kumar, Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Prayas Barman, Akshdeep Nath, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kulwant Khejroliya, Tim Southee, Mohammed Siraj, Nathan Coulter-Nile
Kolkata Knight Riders
Dinesh Karthik(captain), Robin Uthappa, Chris Lynn, Shubman Gill, Rinku Singh, Nikhil Naik, Joe Denly, Shrikant Mundhe, Carlos Brathwaite, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Piyush Chawla, Kuldeep Yadav, Shivam Mavi, Sandeep Warrier, Prasidh Krishna, Lockie Ferguson, Anrich Nortje, Harry Gurney, Yarra Prithviraj
David Warner, Kane Williamson(captain), Manish Pandey, Deepak Hooda, Ricky Bhui, Shreevats Goswami, Jonny Bairstow, Wriddhiman Saha, Martin Guptill, Rashid Khan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Shakib Al Hasan, Yusuf Pathan, Mohammad Nabi, Abhishek Sharma, Vijay Shankar, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Siddarth Kaul, Basil Thampi, Sandeep Sharma, Billy Stanlake, K Khaleel Ahmed, T Natarajan
Kings XI Punjab
Ravichandran Ashwin(captain), Lokesh Rahul, Chris Gayle, Mayank Agarwal, Karun Nair, David Miller, Mandeep Singh, Simran Singh, Nicholas Pooran, Sarfaraz Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Murugan Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Andrew Tye, Ankit Rajpoot, Hardus Viljoen, Arshdeep Singh, Moises Henriques, Varun Chakravarthy, Sam Curran, Darshan Nalkande, Agnivesh Ayachi, Harpreet Brar
As always with the IPL, it'll be tough to find a winner this year. The squads are so evenly matched and T20 cricket is a bit of a toss up even at the best of times. We saw the Melbourne Renegades come from no where to win the BBL this Summer and one of the lower regarded teams in the Indian Premier League could easily do the same. In saying that, we've picked out two teams that really catch our eye and that we think offer some great value heading into the season.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Led by the best batsman in the world, Virat Kohli, the Royal Challengers Bangalore start as fourth favourites to win the Indian Premier League in 2019. How any team with Kohli in the ranks can start on the fourth line of betting is beyond us. The Indian captain finished seventh on the leading run scorers in the IPL last season from just 14 games played, finishing the year with 530 runs at an average of 48.18.
Kohli will once again be joined by South African super-star A.B de Villiers this season, who scored 480 runs at an average of 53.33 in the 2018 Indian Premier League. The former South African skipper might have announced his retirement from international cricket, but make no mistake, he's still one of the most damaging batsmen in the world. Rounding out the top order will be talented batsman/wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel and New Zealand all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme.
A major addition for the Challengers this season will be Aussie all-roudner Marcus Stoinis. Stoinis is arguablt one of the most in form T20 players in the world at the moment after absolutely decimating the 2018-19 Big Bash League. Stoinis captured 14 wickets in 13 games for the Stars at a ridiculous average of 16.14 and was even better with the bat, compiling 533 runs at a league best average of 53.30.
Talented leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal leads a stacked bowling attack that includes international capped seamers in Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Tim Southee and Nathan Coulter Nile. The one issue for the Challengers is their abundance of overseas players and the fact that they can only play four in any game. It might be a challenge for them to trot out seven high quality Indian players, but with the star power they have in the line-up, they should be right in the mix this season.
Chennai Super Kings
On the other side of the coin is the 2018 IPL Champions, the Chennai Super Kings. The Super Kings are the only squad in the league that would be capable of fielding an extremely competitve team with their home grown talent alone. Skipper MS Dhoni is surrounded by talented Indians in Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, Murali Vijay, Ravi Jedaja, Harbhajan Singh, Shardal Thakur and Deepak Chahar.
The number of proven Indians with international experience should have the Super Kings competing on a night to night basis and it means they won't have to rely so heavily on the star players to win games off their own bat. Throw in some talented international players, albeit aging in Shane Watson, Dwayne Bravo and Faf du Plessis and you have the recipe for a winning team.
South African paceman Lungu Ngidi will be critical with the ball for the Super Kings, as will Aussie all-rounder Shane Watson, who compiled a brilliant century in the final of the 2018 IPL season to help his team lift the trophy.
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