Opinion: From Delport to Duminy, IPL can only benefit from Proteas balance

Batsman faces bowler in front of packed cordon

Jonhenry Wilson looks at the South Africans who will be representing franchises in the 2018 edition of the IPL.

The recent Indian Premier League auction saw 10 South African cricketers dotted across six of the eight franchises. The number is significantly smaller than previous editions, as the Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad went without Proteas influence.

The Chennai Super Kings have opted for the most in Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir and Lungi Ngidi. Given their range - batsman, spinner and seamer - du Plessis, Tahir and Ngidi could often find themselves in the same XI. Remember, each team is only allowed four overseas players.

Ngidi is the standout fast bowler in the Chennai franchise - and will benefit from playing alongside England pace ace Mark Wood and Australian veteran Shane Watson. His burgeoning working relationship with national captain du Plessis will, of course, blossom as well.

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The absence of Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn signals the end of an era for IPL cricket. Loyal servants of the tournament since its flashy beginnings in 2008, they’re evidently no longer required - or too unpredictable in fitness and form to purchase.

It will be a big couple of months for Cameron Delport, whose chance to crack the nod for the South African T20I seems to have come and gone. That said, Dolphins team-mate Robbie Frylinck made the step up not so long ago, at the ripe, old age of 33. Delport has gathered plenty of game time in T20 leagues across the globe, but this will be his first IPL stint. How he will break into a Kolkata Knight Riders batting order lined with the likes of Chris Lynn, Andre Russell, Robin Uthappa and plenty of local talent, though, remains in the balance.

David Miller has become a veritable stalwart at the Kings XI Punjab - and is still longing for a maiden title with a franchise that has earned his loyalty through and through. He will have the big-hitting Chris Gayle and Aaron Finch alongside him this time around, suggesting the Punjab patrol are better equipped than ever to go all the way.

A home away from home for many South African cricketers over the years, the Delhi Daredevils have trimmed down to just two in Chris Morris and Kagiso Rabada. Morris, in particular, really has to watch out for injury while there - and not derail his international career.

JP Duminy has returned to the Mumbai Indians and, no longer playing Test cricket and buoyed by a solid Momentum One Day Cup campaign with the Cape Cobras, seems primed for a fruitful jaunt in Mumbai and surrounds.

Finally, there’s AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock at the Royal Challengers Bangalore, who would do well to open the batting with the duo. The right- and left-hand combination is a great tactic in T20 cricket - and will allow Brendon McCullum to capitalise further when arriving at the crease at three.

The views expressed above are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Hollywoodbets.

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Written by Jonhenry Wilson for Hollywoodbets

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