The Indian Premier League (IPL) side Delhi Daredevils have named Liam Plunkett as the replacement for the injured Kagiso Rabada for the 11th edition of the tournament.
Rabada has been side-lined for three months due to a lower back injury. The South African speedster was bought by Delhi in the auctions in January for Rs 4.2 crore (£600,000). Plunkett has been snapped up at his base price of Rs 2 crore (£220,000 approx).
Delhi Daredevils made the announcement on Twitter. “We are glad to announce that @Liam628 will be joining the #DDSquad as a replacement for the injured @KagisoRabada25. He has loads of experience and hits the deck hard. Can’t wait for him to join the lads soon!”
— Delhi Daredevils (@DelhiDaredevils) April 7, 2018
Plunkett, 33, has played 13 Tests, 65 ODIs and 15 T20Is for England in a career spanning over 12 years. In 15 T20Is, Plunkett has 19 wickets at 21.89 and an economy rate of 7.45. In 119 T20 matches, the Yorkshire paceman has 110 wickets at 26.70.
This will Plunkett’s first IPL season and his involvement will take the England representation in the tournament to 12 players. However, Delhi’s gain will be Yorkshire’s loss. The County side will miss the services of their paceman for the start of the County Championship at the very least.
Plunkett had suffered a hamstring injury during the Trans-Tasman series in Australia and New Zealand, and faced a race against time to be fit for Yorkshire’s first game in the Championship. However, the demands of T20s being less strenuous than first-class cricket, Plunkett has opted to play in the tournament.
Martyn Moxon, the Yorkshire chairman, is expected to chair a meeting with other county coaches to discuss the possible implications of England players’ participation in overseas T20 leagues. “It’s another example of us being between a rock and a hard place,” Moxon told the Yorkshire Evening Post. “Surrey have had the same thing with Tom Curran (called up by Kolkata Knight Riders as replacement for Mitchell Starc).
“What do you do, stop a player going and earning a shed-load of money and have him disappointed around the dressing room for not allowing him to go? It’s a lose-lose really for the counties, and it’s one of the items that we’ll be discussing on Tuesday because, as counties, we feel powerless at the moment.”