The Lucknow Super Giants, led by KL Rahul, will be without their regular opener, Quinton de Kock, for their first two IPL games due to his participation in the ICC World Cup qualifier matches for South Africa. As a result, the team is considering either Kyle Mayers or Deepak Hooda to partner with Rahul at the top of the order, according to reports.
An anonymous source familiar with the team’s developments told PTI that Mayers, a left-hander with a strike rate of nearly 135 in T20Is, is likely to be the preferred choice to open with Rahul. Mayers recently demonstrated his potential with a 27-ball-51 knock against South Africa.
However, if the Super Giants decide to strengthen their middle-order or bowling lineup with overseas players, Hooda could also be a good option to open the innings with Rahul. Hooda has previously scored a century for India while opening in T20 cricket and has shown his ability to be a force during the powerplay overs with his improvisation skills.
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The Super Giants’ injury concerns have further compounded their problems. Mohsin Khan, who is undergoing rehabilitation with the team’s strength and conditioning unit, is unlikely to be available for at least the first leg of the IPL tournament.
The team management is considering Jaydev Unadkat as a possible replacement for Mohsin, but he lacks Mohsin’s pace and lethal blockhole delivery. In addition, Lucknow Super Giants may try out Jammu and Kashmir’s Yudhvir Singh Charak or Vidarbha’s Yash Thakur, depending on the team’s situation and pitch conditions.
Lucknow Super Giants and Delhi Capitals will also be without Anrich Nortje and Lungi Ngidi, respectively, who will be playing for South Africa in the same qualifier matches. The absence of key players could have a significant impact on both teams’ performances in the early stages of the IPL.
However, despite the challenges, KL Rahul’s leadership skills and the team’s fighting spirit could give them an edge over their opponents. The Super Giants have a formidable squad, including overseas players like Marcus Stoinis, Nicholas Pooran, and Daniel Sams, who could make a significant impact in the tournament.
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In conclusion, the absence of Quinton de Kock and injury concerns for the Lucknow Super Giants have led to a potential opening partnership between Kyle Mayers or Deepak Hooda with KL Rahul. However, the team’s depth and fighting spirit, coupled with their overseas players, could make them a strong contender in the IPL.
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