Afghan Opener Set to Replace Jason Roy in Gujarat Titans

Rahmanullah Gurbaj
Rahmanullah Gurbaj

Gujarat Titans are set to replace Jason Roy with Afghanistan opener and wicket-kipper batsman Rahmanullah Gurbaj for IPL 2022. Because Jason Roy has withdrawn his name from the IPL 2022 as he does not want to be in the bubble for a long time.

English opener batsman Jason Roy, who has taken an indefinite break from cricket, was bought by the Titans for INR 2 Cores (approximately $ 266,000) at auction. Jason Roy has decided to pull out of IPL 2022 because he does not want to re-enter the ‘Bio-Bubble” for a long time.

As well as having a career-best T20 strike rate of 150+ as an opener, Gurbaj is a good keeper which makes him a multi-purpose player. However, the Gujarat Titans have not yet officially announced Gurbaj as a replacement as they are awaiting the BCCI’s approval.

Gujarat Titans have fielded only two wicket-keeper batsmen from the IPL auction of 2022. They are Wriddhiman Saha and Australian wicket-kipper batsman Matthew Wade. Saha is expected to be their first choice wicket-keeper but they want to have a backup option so they are going to add Gurbaj to the team. Because Cricket Australia has already ruled that contracted Australian players will not be able to play in the IPL until April 6.

Rahmanullah Gurbaj
Afghanistan’s Rahmanullah Gurbaz [Image Source – Getty]

20-year-old Gurbaj has played only 9 ODIs and 20 T20Is in his career. His base price in the 2022 IPL auction was Rs 50 lakh but he was unsold. Rashid Khan and Nur Ahmed are already in Gujarat Titans. So Gurbaj will be the third Afghan player on the Gujarat team.

Also Read: IPL 2022 Schedule [PDF]: Date, Time-Table, Venue, Group, Team List, Points Table, and More

Gurbaj was part of the shortlist of contestants considered to be Roy’s replacement. The list also includes Australian batsmen Ben McDermott, Colin Munro and Martin Guptill of New Zealand, and Dawid Malan of England.

Ben McDermott recently scored his first T20I half-century in the home series against Sri Lanka after finishing as the top run-scorer in the 2021-22 Big Bash League (BBL). However, availability was an obstacle in McDermott’s case, so the Titans settled for Gurbaj, who has been impressive since the starting of his career.

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