Despite being one of the most sought-after opening batsmen in T20 cricket, the Australia limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch has been hugely inconsistent in the Indian T20 League. His last tally of over 300 runs was recorded way back in 2016, following which he returned with strike rates of 166.11, 134, and 111.20.
Though Team Bangalore reached the play-offs last season, Finch’s contribution was very limited and the rise of Devdutt Padikkal further slashed his chances of getting retained.
However, Finch was one of Australia’s main run-getters in the recently concluded Indian tour of Australia, where the opener amassed 249 runs in the three-match ODI series. Hence, the Indian T20 League franchises are expected to throw their hat in the ring for Finch in the auction next month.
Here are three teams who should go for Aaron Finch in the auction:
The two-time Indian T20 League champions had felt the absence of Chris Lynn direly in the last edition of the tournament, when their constant experiment at the top with Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi and Sunil Narine could only fetch the side a fifth-place finish out of the playoffs.
With Team Kolkata releasing Tom Banton and Varun Chakravarthy rising as Narine’s replacement with the ball, Brendon McCullum will be looking for a seasoned opener to take onus at the top. And Finch, who has been a part of the Indian T20 League since 2010, will be a value for money option for the Eoin Morgan-led side.
MS Dhoni’s Chennai are also looking to rebuild their side this season after they finished seventh in the Indian T20 League last time. And with veteran opener Shane Watson announcing retirement from the game, the side would be looking for a replacement for guiding young Ruturaj Gaikwad if and when their campaign goes south.
Unlike Finch’s previous team Bangalore, where there was always pressure to get off the mark early on, Chennai’s strong bowling line-up and Dhoni’s captaincy will allow Finch to settle well before going for the big shots. Finch partnering Faf du Plessis up top could give Chennai the much-needed stability that had gone missing last time.
Not the most ideal team for Aaron Finch after what happened with his compatriot Chris Lynn last season, but Mumbai have reasons to go for the Australian opener this auction. The biggest factor being Finch’s price, which is expected to fall significantly from his previous Rs. 4.40 crores tag of the 2020 Indian T20 League auction.
Finch won’t be Mumbai’s first choice either with the likes of Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan and Quinton de Kock vying for that spot, but having such an experienced player as their back-up will be great for Mumbai who have been known for their smart purchases previously. Apart from his batting, Finch’s inputs as a limited-overs captain could also come in handy for Mumbai.
Feature Image Courtesy: AFP/ David Gray