The Big Bash League (BBL) 2023/24 is underway with the Brisbane Heat winning the first game convincingly against the Melbourne Stars. This is one of the T20 leagues that is followed in many parts of the world, including India. Naturally, there has been a lot of talk over the years about how exciting it could be if Indian players were allowed to participate in the Big Bash League. As of now, only when the Indian players are retired, they are allowed to apply for an NOC to play in these leagues. On that note, let’s take a look at five current Indian players who would have certainly set the stage ablaze had they been a part of the BBL 2023/24:
Seam-bowling all-rounder has been such an invaluable commodity in Indian cricket and that’s perhaps one of the main reasons why Hardik Pandya continues to be such a crucial part of the Men in Blue. He would have loved to bowl in the conditions in Australia where there’s often bounce on offer. Hardik’s ability to bat in the lower middle order and provide finishing skills alongside his bowling is a package that would be incredibly useful in the BBL. Australia have produced some talented seam bowling all-rounders with Cameron Green being the latest example and one of the main reasons for that are the conditions suiting them.
One may argue that Rohit Sharma hasn’t exactly set the stage ablaze in the IPL over the years. However, he remains the Indian player with the most Player of the Match awards in the league, showing his match-winning ability. He has won five IPL titles as captain, further showing just how brilliant he can be with his tactics. Rohit’s 2023 World Cup campaign proved that he also could get his team off to a rollicking start at the top of the order. A dangerous batter and a fine captain, Rohit Sharma is someone any BBL team could happily take as their leader.
Arguably one of the finest all-format bowlers in the modern game, Jasprit Bumrah continues to show what difference he can make to a side when fully fit and firing. He made his name as a T20 specialist in his early days and while he has grown into an all-format bowler, Bumrah’s variations and accuracy are second to none. Someone who can swing the new ball, extract bounce and also bowl cutters and nail his Yorkers to perfection at the death, Bumrah is arguably the complete T20 bowler. He would be another Indian player enjoying a big payday if ever allowed to play in the Big Bash League.
It’s no longer a secret how much Virat Kohli loves to play in Australia. There’s something about the bounce and also the pace in the surfaces Down Under that helps Kohli enjoy his stroke playing. A glorious 82* in the T20 World Cup match against Pakistan last year showed that the veteran batter still has it all to dominate the shortest format. Given his incredible record across formats at the Adelaide Oval, Kohli would arguably fit as the Adelaide Strikers’ marquee player in the BBL.
Suryakumar Yadav’s extraordinary rise as a T20 batter in the past two years has made the world identify him as a superstar in this format. SKY’s ability to use the boundary behind the wicket would work perfectly for him in Australian conditions, as seen in the 2022 T20 World Cup. Suryakumar also has enough experience under his belt of playing in different situations and has shown what he is capable of once he gets going. In current Indian T20 cricket, he would arguably be the most-priced possession that the BBL would love to have on their shores.