Michael Bracewell’s 140-run innings in the opening ODI against India in Hyderabad on Wednesday (January 18) nearly stole the match.
At 131/6, the Kiwis faced an early loss chasing 350. Michael Bracewell rebuilt the Kiwi innings. He did more with vice-captain Mitchell Santner.
Bracewell impressed the Indian fans with a stunning innings.
The left-hander defeated Indian bowlers with his immaculate hitting and top-notch counter-attack.
Bracewell hit 12 boundaries and 10 maximums during his stay. The southpaw motored along the boundaries to reduce the equation to 20 from the last over.
He hit Shardul Thakur for a six off the opening ball of the 50th over, but he was stranded in front of the stumps on the following delivery as the spinner had the last laugh and clinched the deal for India. New Zealand missed a spectacular victory by 12 runs.
Foreign players who do well against India usually attract IPL franchises. Michael Bracewell missed the IPL 2023 auction a month ago.
He was one of 991 IPL 2023 mini-auction players. None of the franchisees wanted Bracewell’s name announced, so the 31-year-old went unsold.
Some IPL franchises missed out on Michael Bracewell during the Kochi mini-auction, given his recent success for New Zealand across formats.
Let’s examine three IPL franchises that may regret not signing Michael Bracewell in the 2023 Auction.
Due to their consistent bowling attack, the Gujarat Titans (GT) won their debut IPL season. GT’s bowling is again their strongest weapon, while their batting may be the worst.
Despite adding Kane Williamson and KS Bharat to their top-order, Hardik Pandya and David Miller will again have to score quickly.
If Gujarat had bought Bracewell in the auction, the left-hander would have cushioned Pandya and Miller and complemented Rashid Khan with his crafty off-spin.
Chennai Super Kings
Although the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) already have several all-rounders, Michael Bracewell would’ve been a great addition.
Bracewell’s versatility and low price tag would have strengthened the four-time champions.
CSK should have released Mitchell Santner and replaced him with Kiwi Michael Bracewell. Santner bowls more disciplinedly than Bracewell, although Bracewell’s batting is much better.
Bracewell could’ve been a good backup for CSK’s Moeen Ali, who will be important in future editions.
Delhi Capitals will enter the tournament with certain concerns (DC).
Rishabh Pant will miss this year’s IPL after his vehicle tragedy. Delhi now needs wicket-keepers to replace Pant and a captain.
However, DC have a lengthy tail and narrow lower-order.
Lalit Yadav, Ripal Patel, and Axar Patel will have to finish the death overs if Rovman Powell fails. Michael Bracewell would’ve helped Ricky Ponting’s team.
Bracewell’s clean striking would have given the franchise a cheap finisher.