With a fractured finger in his left hand, Ben Stokes has been ruled out of the rest of the Rajasthan Royals IPL 2021 campaign. The all-rounder was injured in the Royals’ first game against the Punjab Kings when he ran in from long-on and dived forward to take Chris Gayle’s catch in the Kings’ tenth over.
The Royals’ plans could be severely impacted by Stokes’ injury, particularly because they are already without a first-choice player in Jofra Archer, who is recovering and is expected to miss some considerable amount of games in the season. Archer was cleared to return to training on Tuesday, but it’s questionable when he’ll be able to play again.
The Rajasthan Royals management released a statement on Tuesday where they put lights on the injury and also the value that Ben Stokes adds to the team. They also claimed that they would be looking for potential replacements for Ben.
“Subsequent investigations revealed that he sustained a broken finger, which will, unfortunately, rule him out of the remainder of the Indian Premier League 2021 season. Everyone at Rajasthan Royals absolutely admires Ben for being such a huge asset and a valuable member of the Royals family, both on and off the field, and wishes him a speedy recovery. We are delighted that Ben would like to stay with the group to provide his valued support and inputs off the field. In the meantime, we will be reviewing potential replacement options for the remainder of the season.” stated Royals’ management.
Let’s see which 3 players can Rajasthan Royals look for to replace Ben Stokes.
New Zealand batsman Devon Conway is in the form of his life. After going unsold in the IPL Auction, he smashed a brilliant 99* off just 59 deliveries against Australia. He is ranked 4th in the ICC Men’s T20I Rankings. In the recently concluded ODI series, Conway scored a magnificent ton. He also won the New Zealand Men’s ODI and T20I cricketer of the year award for his performances. He is the top contender to replace Ben Stokes in the RR squad.
Australian wicket-keeper batsman Alex Carey is another prime contender to replace Stokes. He was a part of the Delhi Capitals squad last year but didn’t get enough chances to prove his worth. In the recently concluded BBL, he smashed a ton in his first game of the season and scored 425 runs throughout the season for Adelaide Strikers. He is also a part of Australia’s limited over squad and would add good value to the Royals’ team.
Hard Hitting and explosive Sri Lankan all-rounder Thisara Perera could be a like-for-like replacement of Ben Stokes. He has been a part of IPL previously playing for six franchises. He is an experienced all-rounder who has a decent record in limited-overs International cricket as well as in the IPL. He has scored 1204 runs in T20I cricket with a massive strike rate of 151 also he has 51 wickets to his name. The allrounder recently became the first Sri Lankan to hit six sixes in an over in any form of professional cricket.