Four Associate players register for IPL auction
The auction for the next season of the Indian Premier League takes place on 19 January, and four associate internationals are on the list of players who have registered for the auction.
The players in question are Khurram Chauhan and Rizwan Cheema of Canada, Ryan ten Doeschate of the Netherlands and Ireland's Niall O'Brien. Eoin Morgan, formerly of Ireland and now of England, is also on the list.
Registering for the auction does not automatically mean that they will be up for auction. The IPL teams will select the players they wish to be put up for auction, and the players will be informed of this on Tuesday.
All four players would be more than useful for an IPL team.
Chauhan has yet to play Twenty20 Internationals, but has an economy rate of 4.64 and a bowling average of 30.22 in his eight ODIs to date. He is also capable of some useful runs down the order. His Canadian team-mate Rizwan Cheema has a reputation as a big hitter, and his stats bear that out with a strike rate of 120.95 in Twenty20 Internationals and 131.07 in ODIs. He is also a capable medium pace bowler of the sort that can be successful at time in Twenty20 cricket.
The two Europeans are the most experienced of the four at Twenty20 cricket. O'Brien has played 44 Twenty20 games for Ireland, Kent and Northamptonshire, scoring 545 runs at an average of 20.96 and also has 19 catches and 15 stumpings. Talks of an IPL contract first surfaced during Ireland's run in last year's World Twenty20 tournament.
Ryan ten Doeschate is a useful all-rounder in Twenty20 cricket, and it is in this form that he has most impact playing for Essex. In 53 Twenty20 matches to date he has scored 740 runs at an average of 23.87 and taken 29 wickets at an average of 20.51.
O'Brien's inclusion is interesting on two grounds. Firstly, he is one of a number of former Indian Cricket League players on the list, but more important for Ireland, the IPL season clashes with Ireland's tour of the West Indies in April, which is set to include one ODI and three Twenty20 Internationals. The mandatory release rules are quite clear that whichever, if any, IPL team he ends up with should release him for those four matches, but it remains to be seen if they will or not.