The 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is all set to begin from Friday, April 9. For the second year in a row, the cash-rich league will be played minus fans due to rising COVID-19 cases across the country. Defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI) will take on skipper Virat Kohli's Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the opening game.
The IPL auctions, which were held in February this year, was a rather rollicking affair. Unexpected players like Chris Morris (16.25 cr), Kyle Jamieson (15 cr), Jhye Richardson (14 cr), and Krishnappa Gowtham (9.25 cr) broke the bank.
Meanwhile, let us take a look at the players to watch out for in IPL 2021:
1. Glenn Maxwell
Glenn Maxwell, also known as the 'The Big Show', is undoubtedly one of the biggest hitters going around in cricket these days. However, he has not really set the stage alight in the IPL. Having played for Punjab, Maxwell will now be seen playing alongside Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers in Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). The franchise has paid a whopping 14.25 cr for the all-rounder, hoping to bring some luck to the team. Maxwell has been in some really good form recently and will provide RCB the much-needed firepower in the middle-order.
2. Sam Curran
The 22-year-old English all-rounder was spectacular in the recently-held third ODI against India in Pune. Slamming an unbeaten 95 when wickets were falling at another end, Curran nearly won his team the three-match ODI series. In his debut season for the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) last year, he showed his prowess with both bat and ball. The youngster is a complete package and should definitely be in everyone's fantasy teams this year.
3. Suryakumar Yadav
This Mumbai Indians (MI) batsman was knocking on the doors of the Indian selectors for several years. Finally, he got an opportunity against England in the T20I series, and the 30-year-old grabbed it with both hands. Yadav impressed one and all with his captivating batting during the series. Meanwhile, IPL 2021 is extremely important for him to cement his spot in the star-studded Indian middle-order for the upcoming T20I World Cup.
4. Rishabh Pant
In his short career, Rishabh Pant has gone through a rollercoaster ride. The 23-year-old was heavily trolled for his inconsistent performances and substandard wicketkeeping. However, the southpaw has shown a tremendous amount of improvement in the last few months. Pant was one of the main heroes of India's historic Test series win in Australia. He also followed it up with brilliant performances against England at home. With the added responsibility of leading Delhi Capitals (DC) this season, Pant's fans are surely in for a treat.
5. Rahul Tewatia
Rahul Tewatia became an overnight sensation last season when he smashed five sixes in an over and pulled off an impossible-looking victory for Rajasthan Royals (RR). The 27-year-old is also economical with the ball, and will provide a great option for the newly-appointed skipper Sanju Samson. Tewatia was also recently selected for the England T20I series, however, he did not get an opportunity. With only a few months to go for the T20I World Cup, the left-hander will be rearing to prove his mettle this season.
Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Dawid Malan, Shubham Gill, Pat Cummins, and Ishan Kishan are also some of the other players to watch out for in IPL 2021.