Rajasthan Royals has finally found the replacements for Jos Buttler & Ben Stokes. On Tuesday the franchise announced the West Indian duo of Evin Lewis and Oshane Thomas as replacements for all-rounder Ben Stokes and wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler for the second leg of the IPL 2021.
Rajasthan Royals took to its official Twitter handle to reveal that the West Indies opener Evin Lewis will replace England stumper, Jos Buttler. Meanwhile, pacer Oshane Thomas will replace all-rounder Ben Stokes for the second leg of the IPL 2021.
Ben Stokes is on an indefinite break from all forms of cricket due to mental health issues. Stokes has been featured in just one match in the first phase of the IPL during which he suffered a finger injury. Jos Buttler on the other hand hit his maiden T20 hundred in the last match of Rajasthan Royals during the first phase of the IPL 2021. However, Buttler will be unavailable for the 2nd leg as he is currently on paternity leave.
Adding to the complexities for Rajasthan Royals is the unavailability of its ace pacer Jofra Archer who has been ruled out from all forms of cricket due to a recurrence of a stress fracture in his right elbow. Also, the availability of the franchise’s star opener Liam Livingstone is under doubt as he suffered a shoulder injury during a county championship fixture.
However, the inclusion of Evin Lewis & Oshane Thomas could provide some relief to the franchise which is suffering from the absence of its star players.
Career Highlights of Evin Lewis & Oshane Thomas
Ewin Lewis made his international debut for West Indies during their 2016 World T20 campaign in India, and has 1318 runs registered in 45 T20Is, at a strike rate of 158. He was a leading run-scorer for West Indies by scoring 178 runs in 5 T20Is at an average of 35.60 and a strike rate of 160.36- against South Africa. He also scored 1847 runs for West Indies in 57 ODIs.
His blistering performances for the national side led him to get selected by the Mumbai Indians in 2018. However, the southpaw went unsold in the IPL 2020 & 2021 auctions due to his unimpressive performances in the previous seasons. In 16 games across two seasons, Lewis managed to score a mere 430 runs at an average of 26.87 and a strike rate of 131.09.
On the other hand Fats bowler, Oshane Thomas made his International debut in 2018 in a bilateral ODI & T20I series against India. Thomas has scalped 27 wickets in 20 ODIs, and 19 wickets in 17 T20Is. He has also been a candidate for the West Indies’ Emerging Player of the Year Award in 2019.
In the IPL he has represented RR in the year 2019 where he scalped five wickets in four matches & was with the franchise during the 2020 season in the UAE as well. However, he was released by the franchise ahead of the IPL 2021 mini-auction. Thomas is currently playing in the CPL 2021 where he has displayed some swashbuckling performances for his franchise Barbados Royals.
Rajasthan Royals will start their campaign in the second phase of the IPL 2021 with their first clash against Punjab Kings in Dubai on September 21, 2021. During the UAE leg of IPL 2021, Rajasthan Royals will play a total of 7 matches.
Rajasthan Royals Full Squad
Sanju Samson, Riyan Parag, Shreyas Gopal, Rahul Tewatia, Mahipal Lomror, Kartik Tyagi, Jaydev Unadkat, Mayank Markande, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Anuj Rawat, David Miller, Manan Vohra, Shivam Dube, Chris Morris, Mustafizur Rahim, Chetan Sakariya, K.C. Cariappa, Kuldip Yadav, Akash Singh, Glenn Phillips, Tabraiz Shamsi, Evin Lewis, Oshane Thomas.
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