Gujarat Titans: Afghan's Rahmanullah Gurbaz to fill in Jason Roy's absence

After signing batsman Jason Roy from the IPL 2022 Mega Auction recently, Gujarat Titans reportedly will be replacing the 31-year-old with Afghan cricketer Rahmanullah Gurbaz following Roy who had just pulled out from the IPL. The franchise would likely have Gurbaz instead of other players on board for the upcoming IPL 2022 replacing Roy considering Gurbaz’s stats and what the franchise could get from him.

While for Roy, he pulled out from the IPL following his personal reasons and made a statement on Instagram adding: “spending time working on myself and my game”. While there is no official announcement from the Titans yet at the time of this writing, the franchise appears to have been waiting for a green light from the BCCI to do so as per multiple reports. 

Gurbaz’s stats Fans and reporters dubbed Gurbaz as the “hard-hitting Afghanistan opener” who started his cricketing career in 2017 as he was named in Afghanistan’s squad for the 2018 U-19 Cricket World Cup. The next year to come, Gurbaz’s career in the sport only gets better. He made his international debut with Afghanistan in 2019 and the talented cricketer is only 19-year-old then. In 2021 he became the first Afghanistan cricketer to score a century on debut in an ODI match and 16th overall as Afghanistan played Ireland by scoring 127 runs.

The 20-year-old continues to play for the Afghanistan national team and is rumored to sign for the relatively new Gujarat-based franchise. Previously, other than Afghanistan national team, the young player had spent time playing for Multan Sultans, Islamabad United, Kandy Tuskers and Khulna Tigers. Gurbaz also had participated back and forth from Pakistan Super League, Lanka Premier League and Bangladesh Premier League. Gurbaz’s cricketing career is one that must not be left on the courtside. He got the skills and abilities for the sport, hitting 113 sixes in 69 T20 Games career.

This far Gurbaz might be young but he has played nine ODIs, 12 T20Is, 12 FCs and 38 LAs. In addition, based on the order from ODIs to LAs, Gurbaz’s batting average are 53.50%, 29.05%, 49.52% and 42.48%. ## What’s in it for Titans While Roy’s goodbye dealt a heavy blow for the Titans and fans, Gurbaz’s entry into the franchise appears would have been a “hitting two birds with one stone” situation for the Titans due to its other issues and primarily keeping crisis. The Titans are at risk of playing in the IPL with Wriddhiman Saha who is considered by many as inappropriate following Saha’s T20 record.

The franchise, however, has Matthew Wade but only will be available on the second week of the IPL. Gurbaz on the other is an all-rounder and he could come in to assist the Titans with their keeping crisis ahead of IPL or until Wade’s availability, easing up head coach Ashish Nehra and team captain Hardik Pandya. While it all only comes from multiple reports, his stats and experience put him as one of the most likely players the Titans are looking to fill in the missing puzzle of the franchise. Regardless, fans may expect an official announcement from the franchise as the IPL 2022 is set to begin on March 26.


Arijit Roul

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