T20 LEAGUE: YOUNG AND RESTLESS

 While forever-alone veteran Robin Uthappa finds new ways to consistently get dismissed between 30 and 40 and frustrates his fantasy team owners forever, and Dinesh Karthik and Yuvraj Singh continue to make a mockery of the overhyped ‘auction’ process by failing to cross 100 runs even after half the season, there is a growing list of youngsters—stars of previous editions—that have failed to make any impact in the league so far:

Sanju Samson (RR)

Perhaps the most notable and disappointing of all, Samson—India’s future wicketkeeper star—has failed on all fronts this season. He is one of the Royals’ proudest discoveries, especially when he captured imaginations as a talented and brave 18-year old opener two seasons ago. But now, he has struggled to make the transition, and despite some decent domestic performances, this tournament has been one to forget for him so far. He hasn’t crossed 40 on any occasion, and he lacks confidence and footwork at the crease. He isn’t the same Samson, and he must peak right now, considering Dhoni’s gradual exit from the game.

Karun Nair (RR)

He could still make an impact, but he hasn’t done anything of note so far. In large part, this is due to the Aussie-heavy lineup that RR possess, with only Deepak Hooda being the notable Indian breakout so far, with Nair confused about his role in the batting lineup. He hasn’t figured out how to build an innings yet, and maybe he was best as an opener with Watson at the top. But with Rahane owning that spot, Nair is left at no. 3, followed by superstar Smith and then the ailing Samson. Royals must figure out how to maximize the potential of these kids, lest they disappear like a Mumbai Indians’ reject.

Karn Sharma (SRH)

Karn managed to pick up only his first wicket in his 6th game for the Sunrisers, after playing a containing role as a spinner for most part. He hasn’t been that relentless wicket-taker he was in 2014, and most batsmen have read him well off the pitch. After his brief stint in the Indian test line-up in Australia, Karn must go back to the drawing board and find a way to be more effective than guys like Piyush Chawla, Amit Mishra, Jadeja and Ashwin.

Stuart Binny (RR)

His Indian stint seems to have plummeted his stocks too, and he hasn’t been the effective all-rounder he was groomed to be. Again, this is because of the batting order, where he finds himself at no. 6, too late to make an impact, while his bowling has been inconsistent with Watson restricting him to short 2-over bursts.

Mayank Agarwal (DD)

The RCB import has only played one notable innings so far, falling too often before Iyer at the top, and failing to make any kind of impact—leaving Duminy at 3 to play like a virtual opener. Iyer has outperformed Agarwal, who seems to have played his best in RCB colors amidst the likes of Dilshan, Gayle, Kohli and AB. In this all-Indian opening lineup, he has had the opportunities and the shots, but hasn’t converted his starts yet. Perhaps there is still time, but time is also running out quickly.

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