New Zealand legspinner Ish Sodhi is set for his maiden IPL stint after being signed by Rajasthan Royals as a replacement for the injured left-arm wristspinner Zahir Khan. Sodhi, currently the No. 4 T20I bowler, has been acquired at his base price of INR 50 lakh (USD 77,000).
Zahir was one among four Afghanistan players, apart from Mohammad Nabi, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Rashid Khan, bought at the player auction in January. Zahir, who had set his base price at INR 20 lakh, was acquired for three times that amount. He caught the eye of the franchise during the Under-19 World Cup in New Zealand in January.
In January 2017, Sodhi picked up the second-best figures in Australia’s Big Bash League while playing for Adelaide Strikers. Incidentally, his 6 for 11 came after he was signed as a replacement for England’s Chris Jordan towards the end of the season.
Sodhi has picked up 102 wickets in 92 T20s at an average of 23.09 and economy of 7.66. Only a week ago, Sodhi made news for his lower-order batting that helped New Zealand salvage a thrilling draw against England in Christchurch.
Sodhi isn’t entirely unfamiliar to bowling in India, having previously been part of two New Zealand A tours to the country. He also featured in their World T20 campaign in 2016 as well as in New Zealand’s limited-overs squad during their tour of India in September, as a replacement for Todd Astle.