The Punjab Kings have always kept a handy bunch of all-rounders in their team. Not only does it bolster up the middle order, it also gives the captain, Mayank Agarwal, an extra bowler or two to go in with a surprise attack against oppositions in the Tata Indian Premier League 2022.
The PBKS all-rounders are a mix of supremely talented foreigners and a bunch of youngsters who have the potential to make a difference with the bat and the ball.
English batter Liam Livingstone will be one of the most valuable players for the team this season. In 2021, he played 44 T20 games, stacking up 1301 runs at an average of 37.17, including a 42-ball 103, the record for England’s fastest T20I century. With the ball, the right-hander can bowl a bit of both off break and leg break, and has claimed 21 wickets at an average of 25.19, most notably growing in confidence in England’s recent series against the West Indies.
Next in the list of explosive all-rounders that Punjab Kings have is Odean Smith. The Jamaican played his first match in India in February this year, giving him an understanding of the subcontinent’s playing conditions. While this right-arm medium-fast bowling all-rounder has 36 wickets from 35 T20 games so far, his 33 (11) in Abu Dhabi T10 is testimony to the big-hitting he’s capable of doing down the order.
Raj Angad Bawa is also a great fit into this unit. The youngster, who idolises Yuvraj Singh, is coming off a great U19 World Cup outing where he was among the top eight run scorers, stacking up 252 runs at an average of 63 and a strike rate of over 100 in the five games he batted in. The right-arm medium-pacer was the Player of the Match in the final of the mega event, where he picked 5/31 to lead India to victory. This is enough to portend what the Chadigarh lad is capable of.
This set also includes another Englishman - Benny Howell. He has played 157 T20 games in his career and has 2122 runs and 163 wickets to his name, including best bowling figures of 5/18. He also has 3 four-wicket hauls, and bowls with a strike rate of 18.0.
The youngster from Vidarbha, Atharva Taide, is also among PBKS’ all-rounders. The left-arm batter and slow left-arm orthodox bowler has played 20 T20 matches so far. Both his batting and bowling strike rates are healthy at 129.66 and 15 respectively. He has scored 507 runs at an average of almost 30, and has struck 61 sixes in these games.
Saurashtra’s Prerak Mankad will be a part of the IPL setting for the first time, but having played 34 T20 games, at an average of 33.17 and with 20 wickets, we know the right arm batter and fast-medium pacer has a lot to offer. Bengal’s Writtick Chatterjee, who brings right-arm off break to the table along with his batting, has similar numbers. He has played 27 games, accumulating 262 runs and 21 wickets.
Finally in the mix is the experience of Rishi Dhawan, a right-arm fast-medium bowler who can also bat and has contributed well in the spread opportunities he has had in the IPL so far. He has played 26 matches in the league, bagging 18 wickets and scoring 153 runs.
The Punjab Kings have eight all-rounders in their squad, making it a challenge for the team management and the captain to pick a subset of these.
Who all among these players would you pick in your team? Tell us in the comments below.