More often than not, all-rounders rake in a lot of money in domestic T20 leagues.
All-rounders were in high demand during the IPL 2019 auctions as well. Out of the 60 players going under the hammer during the auctions, as many as 25 were all-rounders.
It is always a boon to have a couple of players in the team who are handy with both the bat and the ball. It has proven to pay dividends in the past and some of the all-rounders have proven to be bang for the buck.
The most (joint) expensive player to be bought at the auction was Varun Chakaravarthy. Kings XI Punjab paid a handsome ₹8.4 crores to procure the services of the bowling all-rounder.
Sam Curran, Shivam Dube, Carlos Brathwaite, and Axar Patel are some of the other all-rounders to receive handsome amounts during the auction.
However, in this article, we look at the Top 5 all-rounders to watch out for in IPL 2019. This is regardless of whether they are retained players or new players purchased at the auctions. Consideration has been given to their performances in the recent past.
Before we proceed, here are the Honourable Mentions:
Hardik Pandya (Mumbai Indians), Kieron Pollard (Mumbai Indians), Ravindra Jadeja (Chennai Super Kings), Keemo Paul (Delhi Capitals), Sam Curran (Kings XI Punjab), Mohammad Nabi (Sunrisers Hyderabad), Vijay Shankar (Sunrisers Hyderabad), Ben Cutting (Mumbai Indians), Marcus Stoinis (Royal Challengers Bangalore), Hardus Viljoen (Kings XI Punjab), Oshane Thomas (Rajasthan Royals).
#5 Kedar Jadhav (Chennai Super Kings)
There is no dearth of potent all-rounders in Chennai Super Kings.
Jadhav's IPL 2018 season was cut short as he suffered a grade-2 hamstring tear in the opening match against Mumbai Indians. The talented all-rounder had been roped in by CSK during the 2018 IPL auctions for ₹7.8 crores. The Pune-born player has been retained by CSK ahead of the 2019 IPL for the same price.
Jadhav will be looking to make a huge impact in the IPL this time around as the all-rounder was ruled out in the last edition and could only get to play one match.
The batting all-rounder played a few sublime knocks for Maharashtra in the Ranji Trophy.
He was called up to the Indian side to play the 5 ODIs against New Zealand. Jadhav played a couple of good cameos with the bat and also clinched a total of 3 wickets.
The attacking player has also impressed in the two ODIs played against Australia at home. He was the Player of the Match in the first ODI as he hit 81 off 87 balls with the bat and helped India win the match. In addition, Jadhav also scalped the wicket of the dangerous Marcus Stoinis in the first ODI.
Jadhav could not do much damage with the bat in the 2nd ODI against Australia but was effective with the ball. He dismissed the well-set Usman Khawaja and ended with the bowling figures 1 for 33 in 8 overs.
CSK will benefit immensely if Kedar can continue the impressive run of form throughout IPL 2019.
#4 Andre Russell (Kolkata Knight Riders)
Andre Russell is one of the most feared players in the shortest format of the game. The in-demand all-rounder boasts of a fantastic record. He has a lot of experience playing in Twenty20 cricket.
In all, the Windies player has played 287 T20s and amassed 4456 runs at an average of 24.61 and a belligerent strike rate of 166.57.
The 30-year-old has proven his mettle in the IPL as well and been a vital cog of KKR since 2014. He was one of the better performing all-rounders in the previous edition of IPL. He clinched 13 wickets in 16 matches besides scoring a total of 316 runs at a strike rate of 184.79. No wonder KKR paid a hefty ₹7 crores to retain him.
Russell played a few excellent cameos for the Dhaka Dynamites in the recently-concluded Bangladesh Premier League. In all, he amassed 299 runs in 15 matches at a strike rate of 156.54 and also clinched 14 wickets at a respectable economy rate of 7.44.
The Jamaica-born player was the key in helping Dhaka Dynamites reach the final of BPL. He will be one of the all-rounders to watch out for in the IPL as well as for his ability to inflict severe damage with both the bat and the ball.
#3 Ben Stokes (Rajasthan Royals)
Stokes clinched 8 wickets and amassed 196 runs in the 13 matches he played in the IPL last season. He was far more effective during the 2017 edition wherein he had made 12 scalps and also scored 316 runs in 12 matches. The exquisite display with the bat and ball earned him the Most Valuable Player award in IPL 2018.
The 27-year-old is the highest-paid overseas player in the history of IPL and he would want to do justice to the price tag in the upcoming edition.
The Christchurch-born player has been in decent form lately. Stokes got 5 wickets and amassed 135 runs in the 4 ODI matches played recently against the Windies.
His tall frame and combative play backed by outrageous talent can prove to be the game-changer for Rajasthan Royals in the upcoming IPL.
#2 Shane Watson (Chennai Super Kings)
Aussie all-rounder Shane Watson boasts of a fantastic record in the IPL. In the 15 matches he played for CSK last season, he amassed 555 runs at a strike rate of 154.59 and an average of 39.64. The veteran player scored 2 centuries and 2 fifties as well and ended up as the 5th highest run-getter of the tournament.
The Ipswich-born player is currently wreaking havoc with the bat in the Pakistan Super League. The 37-year-old has scored a total of 332 runs in the 9 matches played and is currently the highest scorer of the tournament with a batting average of 47.42 and a strike rate of 141.27. He performed well for the Sydney Thunder in Big Bash League as well wherein he amassed 344 runs in 14 matches.
Watson clinched 6 wickets in the 15 matches he played in IPL 2018. However, he has not bowled for Quetta Gladiators in the PSL.
He is still an adept right-arm fast-medium bowler and has over 250 international wickets to his name across all three formats.
#1 Sunil Narine (Kolkata Knight Riders)
Sunil Narine was famous for being a mystery spinner but is now renowned for being an explosive opener as well.
During the IPL 2018, the Trinidad & Tobago-born player amassed 357 runs 16 matches at a blistering strike rate of 189.89. He also clinched 17 wickets at an economy of 7.65. His brilliant show with both the bat and the ball earned him the Most Valuable Player award in IPL 2018.
The Windies player has been retained by KKR for ₹8.5 crores.
Narine put up a sublime show at the recently-concluded Bangladesh Premier League as well. The Dhaka Dynamites player picked up 18 wickets in 15 matches at an economy of 6.35 and a strike rate of 18.6. The 30-year-old all-rounder also made a total of 279 runs in the 15 innings at a strike rate of 143.07.
KKR will hope he can continue his magnificent form going into the 2019 IPL as well. Both Narine and Russell are important players in their ranks.
Which all-rounder do you think would be the most impactful in the upcoming IPL? Do share your opinion in the comments section below.