The Punjab Kings’ bowling attack has been strategically built by the management to ensure there is variety and an abundance of options to pick and choose from. The team looks balanced with talented India and overseas players making the mix for the Tata Indian Premier League 2022.
The biggest strength of the team is the sheer number of bowlers that the management has picked during the IPL 2022 auction. Apart from the team having steady all-rounders who can chip in with an over or two, the team has ten exclusive bowlers.
Pacer Kagiso Rabada will spearhead the attack for the team. The South African only recently picked up a fiery five-wicket haul against Bangladesh, a screaming indicator of his current form. As for his IPL career, he has picked up 76 wickets in just 50 games at a stellar strike rate of 15.0. He isn’t called the Rabada Express for nothing!
Wily spinner Rahul Chahar will be the go-to leggie for the captain in crunch moments. The youngster had made a name for himself as the lead spinner for his former franchise, bagging 13, 15, and 13 wickets in the last three seasons. He also has a good strike rate of 20.93. His ODI debut for team India came less than a year ago, and he played in the T20 World Cup almost immediately after that. This, too, should give him a lot of confidence to take on mighty batters from across the world.
Arshdeep Singh is another enthusiastic youngster who has a lot to offer. One of the two players retained by PBKS, it shows the trust the team has in Singh's abilities. His numbers, in turn, display how well he’s gotten the job done for the team. In 23 IPL games, he already has 30 wickets, striking at 15.23, including a 5/32 against Rajasthan Royals last year, becoming the third youngest IPL player to pick a five-fer.
Sandeep Sharma has produced rich dividends while sticking to conventional swing bowling techniques. He previously single-handedly shouldered a bulk of Punjab Kings’ bowling responsibilities between seasons 2013-17. He also holds the unique record of being the first man to dismiss Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Chris Gayle - all at RCB then - in a single game. This year, he makes a comeback into the squad, ready to play his 100th Indian Premier League match.
Slow left-arm orthodox spinner Harpreet Brar, who made his IPL debut with Punjab Kings in 2018, rarely got the opportunities later but when he finally did, he made them count. Against RCB in 2021, Brar, who had been wicketless in the IPL till then, dismissed Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Glenn Maxwell in a span of seven deliveries without conceding a single run. It is safe to say that this golden spell showed what he is capable of, and he was bought back by PBKS for IPL 2022.
Baltej Singh, the third bowler from the state of Punjab in this list, has been roped in for his first IPL by PBKS. He has played 22 T20 games so far, picking 26 wickets and striking at 18.8. Right-arm medium-fast bowler Ansh Patel, who has been a part of the Baroda U19 unit, is also among the bowlers in the team.
Bengal’s Ishan Porel, who has played age level cricket for the team since his U16 days, has 30 wickets in 22 T20 games. He brings to the table another right-arm medium bowling option. Himachal Pradesh’s Vaibhav Arora has been a part of the Indian Premier League with another franchise before, but is yet to make a debut. Like Porel, he is also a right-arm medium pacer.
Finally, we have Australia’s Nathan Ellis, another right-arm medium pacer, in the team. He has played 44 T20 games and picked up 50 wickets. However, he is yet to unleash himself in the IPL, having played only three matches, all in the previous season for the Punjab Kings. The Hobart Hurricanes player will be looking to go all-out at any opportunity presented to him.
Having laid out details of the 10 bowlers the Punjab Kings have, let us know who you would pick in your Playing XI!