ENGLAND have 14 players competing in this year’s IPL – the biggest competition in franchise cricket.
From World Cup hero Ben Stokes to youngster Sam Curran, here are the international stars dreaming of glory out in India.
Ben Stokes, Rajasthan Royals
England’s most prominent cricketer has been an ever-present fixture in the IPL since he was signed by the now-defunct Rising Pune Supergiant in 2017.
The 29-year-old picked up the MVP award that season for his outstanding performances, scoring 316 runs and taking 12 wickets.
Stokes has failed to reach those levels in the competition since – moving to Rajasthan in 2018 – but remains one of the IPL’s biggest attractions.
Jofra Archer, Rajasthan Royals
The Sussex all-rounder is the current holder of the MVP award, taking 20 wickets and scoring 113 runs in last year’s tournament.
There’s a good chance the 26-year-old won’t feature this year as he’s currently recovering from hand surgery in England.
The Royals will be hoping Archer, who has 46 IPL wickets to his name, recovers in time to play some part in the tournament.
Eoin Morgan, Kolkata Knight Riders
England’s white-ball captain is a veteran of the IPL having made his debut in 2010 for Royal Challengers Bangalore.
The 34-year-old has made 66 appearances in total, also playing for Sunrisers Hyderabad and Punjab Kings.
Morgan remains one of the most feared batsmen in T20 cricket despite his advancing years, scoring 418 runs in last year’s tournament.
Dawid Malan, Punjab Kings
The debutant has bagged himself an IPL gig after a remarkable rise in T20 cricket.
The 33-year-old hadn’t played an international match four years ago but is now the world’s No.1-ranked batsman in the format thanks to his stunning performances in an England shirt.
Malan hit an unbeaten 99 in his country’s victory against South Africa in December, scoring more than 1,000 runs in just 24 appearances.
Moeen Ali, Chennai Super Kings
The all-rounder is irresistible on his day and will be looking to make an impression in Chennai after an indifferent start to his IPL career.
The 33-year-old enjoyed a solid tournament with former side Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2019, scoring 220 runs and taking six wickets in his 11 games.
Moeen hasn’t always been given a chance to flourish in the competition, though, making just 19 appearances in total from his three campaigns.
Jonny Bairstow, Sunrisers Hyderabad
The wicketkeeper-batsman burst on to the IPL scene in 2019 when he was signed by the Hyderabad-based team.
The 31-year-old scored 445 runs in just ten games – a tally bettered by only nine – and may have finished as the tournament’s leading run-scorer if he hadn’t been recalled by England.
Bairstow continued his good form last year, scoring an impressive 345 runs in 11 games, to confirm himself as one of the competition’s leading players.
Chris Jordan, Punjab Kings
Arguably England’s best T20 bowler and fielder, the Sussex quick has been given limited opportunities in the IPL.
The 33-year-old previously had contracts at Royal Challengers Bangalore and Sunrisers Hyderabad before Punjab Kings gave him a deal last year, making just 20 appearances since his 2016 debut.
There is every chance 2021 could be Jordan’s year, though, becoming England’s leading T20 wicket-taker in December.
Jos Buttler, Rajasthan Royals
England’s first-choice wicketkeeper – a veteran of the IPL – will play in his sixth campaign this year.
The 30-year-old has smashed more than 1,700 runs in the competition since making his debut for Mumbai Indians in 2016 – and is expected to produce more fireworks in 2021.
Buttler moved to Rajasthan in 2018 and has made more than 270 international appearances.
Sam Curran, Chennai Super Kings
The all-rounder caught the attention of the cricketing world in 2018 when he enjoyed a stellar Test series against India, landing him an IPL contract for the following year.
The 22-year-old went on to impress at Punjab Kings, becoming the youngest bowler to take a hat-trick in the competition, before moving to Chennai in 2020.
Since Curran’s 2019 debut, he has scored 281 runs and taken 23 wickets – and remains one to watch.
Tom Curran, Delhi Capitals
Sam’s older brother will represent his third IPL team this year, although he’s yet to make a real impact in the tournament.
The 26-year-old, who previously played for Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals, has made just 10 appearances to date, taking nine wickets.
He is accustomed to featuring on the big stage, though, picking up 28 T20 caps for England – and will be aiming to become a regular in the franchise.
Chris Woakes, Delhi Capitals
This year’s IPL is a huge tournament for the Warwickshire all-rounder as he looks to secure a place in England’s T20 side.
Despite being an ever-present figure in the ODI team, the 32-year-old has made only eight T20 appearances at international level – the last of which coming in 2015.
Woakes enjoyed a decent debut campaign with Kolkata Knight Riders in 2017 – taking 17 wickets – but played just five games the following year for Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Jason Roy, Sunrisers Hyderabad
The big-hitting Surrey batsman has performed in nearly every franchise tournament in world cricket but is yet to show his best in the IPL.
The 30-year-old made just eight appearances in the competition for previous sides Gujarat Lions (now-defunct) and Delhi Capitals – and only received a contract this year when Australian Mitchell Marsh pulled out.
But with plenty of experience under his belt, including 43 T20 caps for England, there is every chance Roy could star in India.
Sam Billings, Delhi Capitals
An IPL winner with Chennai Super Kings in 2018, Billings has missed just one tournament since making his debut five years ago.
But the 29-year-old is yet to make a name for himself, making just 22 appearances in his previous four campaigns.
Kent’s club captain has plenty of ability, scoring his maiden international century against Australia last summer in an ODI, and will be hoping to play a starring role for Delhi.
Liam Livingstone, Rajasthan Royals
The Lancashire batsman will feature in his second IPL campaign this year having previously made four appearances for the Royals in 2019.
The 27-year-old is on the fringes of the England squad, picking up four caps across all formats since his international debut in 2017.
Livingstone will be hoping he replicate his form in the recent Big Bash tournament in Australia, where he smashed 426 runs – a tally bettered by only six batsmen.