Imran Tahir IPL 2020: The 41-year old South African spinner has been finally handed a spot in the Playing XI in Sharjah tonight.
During the 41st match of the ongoing 13th season of the Indian Premier League between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians in Sharjah, stand-in Mumbai Indians captain Kieron Pollard won the toss and chose to field.
“We are gonna bowl first. Don’t expect the wicket to change much and hopefully there’s some dew. We want to qualify to the playoffs first and we still have to come out and play good cricket. We have spoken about areas we need it improve and we want to execute them in the middle tonight,” Pollard told Star Sports during the toss.
The only change for Mumbai was that of regular captain Rohit Sharma. Having suffered a left leg hamstring strain in the last match against Kings XI Punjab, Sharma will miss tonight’s match as batsman Saurabh Tiwary has been included as his replacement.
Imran Tahir IPL 2020
Chennai Super Kings, on the other hand, have made as many as three changes to their Playing XI. Uncapped Indian batsmen Ruturaj Gaikwad and Narayan Jagadeesan and spinner Imran Tahir have been included for this match in the place of batsmen Shane Watson and Kedar Jadhav and spinner Piyush Chawla.
While Gaikwad and Jagadeesan have both played a couple of matches this season, 41-year old Tahir has been included for the first time despite winning the Purple Cap in IPL 2019.
— Chennai Super Kings (@ChennaiIPL) October 23, 2020
In the absence of regular vice-captain Suresh Raina, Super Kings mostly played a couple of overseas batsmen in the top-order namely Shane Watson and Faf du Plessis. With all-rounder Sam Curran and another overseas pacer taking up the remaining two overseas slots, Tahir had to warm the bench till now.
It is only after Watson has been benched tonight that Tahir got a place with Chawla also not playing. The presence of two leg-spinners in Chawla and Karn Sharma also made it difficult for Tahir to find a place.
Tahir, who was bought by Chennai before IPL 2018, has picked 32 wickets in 23 matches for CSK at an average of 19.34, an economy rate of 7.28 and a strike rate of 15.94. Before joining the Super Kings’ squad in the UAE, Tahir had represented Guyana Amazon Warriors in the recently concluded season of the Caribbean Premier League.