Indian Premier League (IPL) teams should consider picking UAE’s star batsman Shaiman Anwar, who sparkled with his bat in the recent ICC Cricket World Cup 2015.
Shaiman has proved his worth by being among the top run-getters of the tournament, scoring heavily against countries with top-class bowling attack.
Though the International Cricket Council considers IPL merely as an Indian tournament, it must be accepted that this event is the best Twenty20 tournament in the world today.
Every cricketer from around the world now hopes to play in the IPL that stands miles ahead of all the Twenty20 tournaments hosted by many other countries.
If IPL has earned a reputation for itself, it is because of the stars from different parts of the world that play in it. In that context, India is actually obliged to encourage cricket around the world through this event. The IPL, by providing a slot for players from associate countries and giving them a chance to rub shoulders with the best, will be encouraging talent from around the world!
Though it may not be possible to demand that IPL opt or not opt for certain players, like they have decided to ignore Pakistan players, this is a suggestion to consider for the organisers of this richest tournament. Players from Afghanistan like Shapoor Zadran are ideal for IPL, and many such players from lesser-known countries too can start dreaming of playing in this event.
To project players as candidates for the IPL, it would also be ideal if associate countries take the lead and organise an IPL-style tournament. IPL teams could then be tempted to consider some of the top players from this tournament. So, rather than crying over the reduction of teams to 10 in the next 50-over World Cup, associate countries should focus on trying to get their players included in the IPL. Players will not only benefit financially, but their countries can also do well in the Twenty20 World Cup.
Playing in the IPL has become an opportunity for cricketers around the world to advance their skills. In fact, some countries in the recent World Cup did well due to the large presence of their players in the IPL. While it may take some time for players from associate countries to become Test players, they should now aim to become an IPL player. It will give them the chance to rub shoulder with the best cricketers in the world.
Most cricketers in associate countries hardly have any goal to achieve. Let IPL be their target. IPL teams should also look out for players with exceptional skills, be it from UAE or Afghanistan. Players like Shaiman should be a natural choice.