Jos Buttler,Roelof van der Merwe and Will Jacks. (Photo Source: Twitter)
The inaugural edition of the SA20 league began on January 10 and numerous big names from all around the world are taking part in the tournament. Cricket South Africa (CSA) has tried to shift its focus onto franchise cricket as it aims to harness its emerging talent.
Although CSA is likely to reap the rewards of pushing SA20 in the coming future, they had to forfeit one of their ODI series against Australia because of the same and have lost points in the ongoing World Cup Super League.
The league has started off well and the teams are managing the hectic schedule. Pretoria Capitals have been a force to be reckoned with as they sit comfortably on the top of the points table, while Durban’s Super Giants would look to improve after winning only three out of their eight games.
All the other four teams are fighting hard to get a ticket to the semi-finals in the inaugural edition of the league.
There are some players who are shining in the tournament with their exceptional performances across matches. Franchises from all around the world will have a keen look at these players and scout them accordingly.
There have been high-scoring matches as well as low-scoring thrillers and teams have given their best to stay in the hunt for the semis. We have curated a list of players who have been at their clinical best throughout the tournament till now.
1) Anrich Nortje
Anrich Nortje (Photo Source: Twitter)
South African speedster Anrich Nortje has been in form for a couple of years now. His sheer pace coupled with the right line and length can trouble the best batters on any given day. He has been leading the South African pace attack alongside Kagiso Rabada in all formats for quite a while now. His numbers in the IPL and other franchise cricket have been impressive as well.
Nortje is at the heart of the Pretoria Capitals’ pace attack and is one of the main reasons why the team is doing so well in the league. Nortje is the second-most leading wicket-taker in the ongoing tournament and his figures have also been amazing. He has taken 13 wickets at an average of 12.61 at a great economy of just over six.
Nortje is the key bowler in the Pretoria Capitals bowling line-up and his quota of four overs is probably the most valuable for the team. His ability to take key wickets at important stages of the game are highly inavaluable. He has all the variations up his sleeve and would be looking to ensure his team reaches the playoffs with ease.
2) Jos Buttler
Jos Buttler. (Photo Source: Twitter)
T20 cricket and Jos Buttler is a love story that never seems to end. Be it international cricket or franchise cricket, Buttler just never stops scoring and makes sure he makes a big score once he gets his eye in. He has a knack of scoring hundreds in T20 cricket and always makes the bowlers pay if they bowl in his area.
Buttler once again is having a great T20 tournament as he has scored 235 runs in eight innings at an impressive average of 40.71.
Buttler has been a key batter for his side and a lot depends on him to ensure Paarl Royals get through to the semi-finals. The England white-ball captain has taken his time in this tournament and made sure that he capitalises on his starts more often than not. Paarl Royals are third on the table and would want Buttler to score more runs to take their team to the semi finals.
3) Heinrich Klaasen
Heinrich Klassen. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Heinrich Klaasen is one of the highest-scoring wicket-keeper batters and has become one of the key players for Durban’s Super Giants. Klaasen has made sure that he gives his side enough runs to fight for. Klaasen has been one of the very few players in the Durban’s Super Giants team to have performed consistently across games.
Super Giants have had a terrible season till now having won only three out of their eight games. They would be looking to Klaasen and other players to make sure they win their remaining games this season. The first two matches that the team won were courtesy of Heinrich Klaasen and his solid contribution.
He has scored 259 runs in eight innings at an average of over 43 and a strike rate of 146.32. He scores his runs after coming to bat in the middle order and plays quick-fire cameos to take his team to a good total or while chasing a target down.
4) Roelof van der Merwe
Roelof van der Merwe. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Everyone was very well aware enough of the skills van der Merwe possessed after his amazing exploits in the recently concluded T20 World Cup. The veteran repaid the faith shown by Sunrisers Eastern Cape on him by taking regular wickets for his side and being a key bowler for the franchise.
The Netherlands left-arm spinner has taken 14 wickets in six matches and has one of the most economical figures in the tournament. He also has the best bowling figures in a match in the ongoing edition after he took six wickets while conceding 20 runs in his quota of four overs. The spell ensured a big win for his side and helped the team with a big NRR boost as well.
Sunrisers Eastern Cape would be hoping for some similar excellent performances from the spinner in order to ensure a safe route forward for them to the semis. van der Merwe is a key player for them and it remains to be seen how he performs in the upcoming matches.
5) Will Jacks
Will Jacks. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Will Jacks has been the Player of the Tournament till now and has been scoring runs for fun. Whenever he comes out to bat he looks to time the ball well and in the gaps for runs. He is in glorious form and is one of the main reasons why Pretoria Capitals are top of the league.
Jacks is the third-most leading run-getter in the tournament with 270 runs in seven innings at an average of 38.57. The strike rate of just over 200 at which he scores runs is also mind-boggling. Being one of the top run-getters at such an impressive strike rate is a great challenge but the English batter has passed the daunting task with great ease.
He along with Nortje are the pillars of the side and have ensured that Pretoria Capitals remain ahead of the other teams in almost all aspects of the game. The franchise would want Jacks to continue the free-flowing runs from his bat and help them in the knockout stages of the tournament.