The 13th edition of the Indian T20 League is all set to kick off in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from September 19. The nature of tracks and the big boundaries in the UAE stadiums have traditionally favoured spinners and thus, there is no doubt that they are going to play a key role for all the franchises in this edition. Having said that, let's take a look at five spinners who can dominate the conditions in UAE.
The Afghan spinner is one of the finest mystery spinners in the world right now. He has an excellent T20 record to his name, having claimed a total of 130 wickets in 121 matches at an excellent economy rate of 6.60. Mujeeb has a good bowling record to his name in the Indian T20 League as well.
In 16 Indian T20 League matches, he has claimed a total of 17 wickets and is coming into this edition on the back of a stellar showing in the Caribbean Premier League. The 19-year-old registered a total of 15 wickets in the league stage at a mean economy rate of 5.23. Similar conditions will be in store in the UAE and thus, he can be expected to put on a show there as well.
Shreyas Gopal (Rajasthan)
No other Indian spinner has claimed more wickets than Gopal in the last two editions of the Indian T20 League. Since 2018, the 25-year-old has registered a total of 31 wickets at an average of 18.80 and that includes multiple dismissals of top batsmen like Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers as well.
Gopal's main strength is his deceptive googly with which he has bamboozled even the world's best batsmen in the last couple of years. Moreover, he is quite tall and that helps him in extracting significant bounce off the surface to go along with the sharp turn he gets. That sums up how skilful he is as a bowler and Rajasthan will be looking forward to another superb performance from him in Indian T20 League 2020.
Rashid Khan (Hyderabad)
He doesn't need any introduction at all. The Afghan international has bossed the Indian T20 League ever since his maiden appearance in the tournament in 2017. Since then, Rashid has gone on to register 55 wickets in 46 Indian T20 League matches and that too at a mean economy rate of 6.55.
Rashid's main strength is his ability to extract sharp turn off the surface -- both with leg-breaks and googlies -- at a high pace. That gives the batsmen minimal time to adjust to the change in trajectory of the ball, which in turn helps Rashid keep them under control. He had a good outing in the CPL 2020 as well. In a total of 10 matches for Barbados Tridents, Rashid claimed 11 wickets at an economy rate of 6.85.
Yuzvendra Chahal (Bangalore)
The Indian international has been associated with Bangalore ever since the 2014 season and has 100 Indian T20 League wickets to his name till date at an excellent strike-rate of 17.87. His consistency as a bowler over the years has been unreal and he continues to be a wicket-taking force for the team even today.
Chahal is one of the rare spinners who can bowl at any stage of a T20 game. Whether it is in the powerplay or the middle-overs or in the death, Chahal always backs himself to deliver under pressure. Not only does he get sharp turn due to the high number of revolutions he imparts to the ball, but Chahal also varies his pace quite well to keep the batsmen guessing. He has immense experience and that's why he can be expected to succeed in UAE.
Ravichandran Ashwin (Delhi)
He has been out of the Indian T20 side for quite a long time now but Ashwin still remains one of the best Indian spinners in the Indian T20 League even today. The experienced campaigner made a move to Delhi from Punjab during the trade window last year.
The 34-year-old has played a total of 139 Indian T20 League matches till date and registered 125 wickets in them at an excellent economy rate of 6.89. He claimed 15 wickets in the last season even after playing most of his matches on the unhelpful Mohali track. So that sums up the kind of trouble he can cause the batsmen when he gets some help from the conditions in UAE this time.
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Noah Seelam
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