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Martin Guptill’s Snub Highlights A Curious Case Of The IPL Thinktank

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The Indian Premier League hasn’t been a lucky charm for swashbuckling New Zealand opening batsman Martin Guptill. The Kiwi sensation faced a similar brunt this year at the auctions after being ignored in 2016 auctions too. And when one looks at his record, he is the highest scorer in the Twenty20 International format.
Guptill has been one of the most consistent batsman in T20 cricket since his debut in this format in 2009 against Australia. Since then,  not only has he gone on to smash the highest ever runs tally in T20Is, but also brags about having two centuries which only a few have mustered in the shortest format.
A look at the batsmen who have two or more tons in T20Is.
Colin Munro: 3 Tons
Chris Gayle: 2 Tons
Brendon McCullum: 2 Tons
Evin Lewis: 2 Tons
Rohit Sharma: 2 Tons
Martin Guptill: 2 Tons
In the ongoing Trans-Tasman Tri-Nation series that includes New Zealand, England and Australia, Guptill smashed his way into the record books after a whirlwind 49-ball century. His 105 against the Aussies was a stellar show of power hitting and finesse. The ability that makes Guptill dangerous is his knack for hitting big boundaries, and his nine sixes at Eden Park, showed his love with the white ball.
Guptill’s T20I career 

              Matches                  Runs                Best         Strike Rate
                  74                   2250                  105             132.82

In the process, the BlackCaps opener surpassed former Kiwi skipper Brendon McCullum as the highest run-getter in T20Is. He followed it up with another 62-run knock against England. In one way this was a fitting reply to the franchises in the IPL, who decided to snub him, despite going in for several other players of the New Zealand outfit.
The batsman had a base price of a decent looking Rs 75 lakhs, and one may feel with teams going for other foreign recruits for 10 times the sum, the omission of Guptill is a shocking affair. Back in 2016 after having found no takers, he was later called by the Mumbai Indians as a replacement for Lendl Simmons.
Last year, he finally got lucky in the auction after breaking the duck for under performers Kings XI Punjab. The player was limited to only seven matches after missing initially through hamstring injury, before making his presence felt. After a stunning year in the limited overs format, Guptill would have liked to found another team this term, but unfortunately it wasn’t to be.
Guptill’s IPL record

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              Matches                   Runs                 Best         Strike Rate
                  10                     189                    50             132.17

2018 has seen the player get off to a stellar start and he has already notched four half centuries and a ton.  Runs have come from his bat against the likes of West Indies, Pakistan, England and Australia. Somewhere teams in the IPL could go on to rue the fact given Guptill’s consistency.
KXIP went for a complete overhaul this season after retaining only Axar Patel, as they snubbed South African opener Hashim Amla too. The senior player had a good 2017 campaign and will definitely feel the brunt for seeing his name not make the cut in the auction pool. The Punjab outfit left both the duo out of their plans and so did other franchises.
Back in 2016, NZ skipper Kane Williamson pointed out he was not sure what teams in the IPL want after they had snubbed Guptill. In 2018, several BlackCaps players and cricket fans will feel the same. The IPL auction is always hard to predict but it remained a mystery why one of the form batsmen in world cricket, has been consistently overlooked.
With a plethora of opening batsmen in the auction, one may coy on the possibility of a big name player miss the gun, but one of Guptill’s calibre is an unanswerable subject. There is some stigma attached to Guptill against spin in the sub-continent, but he has just batted in five innings in T20Is with a highest score of 45 and an average of 11.40.
Kings XI Punjab co-owner Preity Zinta, recently received the stick by fans on social media site Twitter for overlooking Guptill. Former England skipper Michael Vaughan was also left baffled.


The eight teams in the IPL might be left thinking what could have been had they opted to buy one of the top names in world cricket. They will hope they do not get to rue their decision in the end.
GUPTILL’S T20I STATS

  • Martin Guptill’s century from 49 balls is the fastest by a New Zealander, overtaking Brendon McCullum’s previous record of 50 deliveries
  • Guptill also overtook McCullum’s mark of 2140 career runs to be the highest run-scorer in the history of T20 Internationals
  • The opener also joined an elite list of only becoming the sixth player to have reached two centuries in T20Is
  • He has amassed 2250 runs in T20Is

TOP 5 RUN GETTERS IN T20Is

  • Martin Guptill (NZ) – 2250 runs
  • Brendon McCullum (NZ) – 2140 runs
  • Virat Kohli (IND) – 1956 runs
  • T Dilshan (SL) – 1889 runs
  • Shoaib Malik (PAK) – 1821 runs
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