Afghanistan’s Rahmanullah Gurbaz replaces Jason Roy at Gujarat Titans ahead of IPL 2022
One of the two new teams in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022, the Gujarat Titans have announced that they have signed up Afghanistan’s explosive batsman Rahmanullah Gurbaz as the replacement for their star opening English batsman Jason Roy, who has withdrawn from the tournament citing workload and bio-secure bubble issues. The governing council of the IPL 2022 tournament have also approved the move which has come weeks after the conclusion of the IPL 2022 mega auction, which was held in Bangalore last month.
“Gujarat Titans (GT) have signed Rahmanullah Gurbaz as a replacement for the England batter Jason Roy for the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022. Gurbaz, an Afghanistan wicketkeeper-batter, has played 20 T20Is, and has 534 runs against his name with the help of 3 half-centuries and a strike rate close to 138 in the T20 internationals,”the Indian cricket board announced in a release.
“Gurbaz, who joins Gujarat Titans at his base price of INR 50 Lakh, will be the third Afghanistan cricketer alongside Rashid Khan and Noor Ahmad to feature for the franchise. Gujarat Titans, who will be making their IPL debut this year, will face Lucknow Super Giants in their first game of the IPL 2022 on March 28 at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai,”the release added.
With this development, Gurbaz will be joining two other Afghanistan players — star bowler Rashid Khan and Noor Ahmad — in the Gujarat Titans camp. While Rashid was signed up by the new IPL 2022 team, Noor was bought in the auction by the team which will be captained by India’s star all-rounder Hardik Pandya.
Announcing the development, the former England batsman and director of cricket at Gujarat Lions, Vikram Solanki said in a statement,
“Whilst it is disappointing that Jason will not be a part of our campaign this year, we are mindful of the health and well-being of players in these times. We wish Jason well and look forward to his return to the field.”
“Rahmanullah Gurbaz is one of the promising young batters to emerge from Afghanistan and we believe he is an ideal replacement for Jason. Gurbaz is an attacking batter and fits into our plans for the Gujarat Titans. He has given a good account of his talent in international cricket and a few tournaments around the globe,”Solanki said.
The Gujarat Titans are set to have a preparatory camp at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad starting March 30, according to ESPNCricinfo. The squad will first undergo a mandatory three day hard quarantine period, while the team will have the training camp from March 17-24. The team will then travel to Mumbai for their first-ever IPL 2022 match, which will be against another new team in the tournament, Lucknow Super Giants.
While the camp will feature all the coaches as well as officials of the team, the senior South African batsman David Miller is expected to join the squad in Mumbai directly after the conclusion of the series against Bangladesh.
Hardik Pandya, Rashid Khan, Shubman Gill, Mohammed Shami, Jason Roy, Lockie Ferguson, Abhinav Sadarangani, Rahul Tewatia, Noor Ahmed, Sai Kishore, Vijay Shankar, Jayant Yadav, Dominic Drakes, Darshan Nalkande, Yash Dayal, Alzarri Joseph, Pradeep Sangwan, David Miller, Wriddhiman Saha, Matthew Wade, Varun Aaron, B Sai Sudharshan.