With the Champions Trophy drawing near, it’s time to make your Fantasy League team picks for the tournament which kicks off on 1 June.
With an R1-million budget and players ranging between R50 000-R200 000, you have to pick wisely to find your perfect combination.
All-rounder: Ben Stokes
This is your most important player in your squad as you will accumulate points for both wickets and runs. The trick will be to select someone who you can get maximum reward for, using the least amount of points. With an ODI record of 1 244 runs @ 29.61 and a strike rate of 98.49, coupled with 46 wickets @ an economy rate of 6.09, Stokes will be a smart pick to make. Coming off a strong IPL Season, the IPL 10 MVP scored 316 runs in 12 matches @ 31.60 and a strike rate of 142.98, which included a maiden T20 century. He also took 12 wickets to round off a complete campaign for the Rising Pune Supergiant. The 25-year-old is priced at R150 000 and seeing that England are the host country, it will be wise to take a gamble with one of England’s most dangerous players.
Middle Order: Virat Kohli
Not only is Kohli the captain, he is India’s best player. Despite his recent slump in the IPL, his ODI record speaks for itself. 179 matches, 7 755 runs, an average of 53.11, including 27 centuries and 39 fifties, the India skipper is priced at R200 000 and is someone you can build a team around.
Wicketkeeper: Quinton de Kock
South Africa’s golden boy, and CSA’s Player of the Year, had a phenomenal year which is the reason why he is one of the most expensive players in the game. Not only is he an opening batsman, he will accumulate points as a wicketkeeper too. He’s racked up 954 runs in 22 matches this season, at an average of 45.42, which included two hundreds and seven fifties. This included a career-best 178 against Australia. As a keeper, he’s taken 24 catches and two stumpings, which means extra points for his wicketkeeper attributes. At R200 000, De Kock would be a great choice if you’re looking for players from the No 1 ranked ODI side.
Do you really want to make the same mistake that all the IPL franchises made during IPL 10? Don’t let the best ODI bowler in the world go unsold, he is likely to take a chunk of the Proteas’ wickets during their Champions Trophy campaign. With 35 wickets in 20 matches this season, Tahir is a bargain at R100 000.
Fast Bowlers: Mitchell Starc
In Mitchell Starc you will have arguably the best fast bowler currently in the world at your disposal. The left-arm quick is a handful for most batsmen who face him, as his 129 wickets in 65 matches with best figures of 6-28 suggest. He is also a handy lower-order batsman capable of playing cameos for any team he represents. Though the Australian is going for R200 000, he is a worthwhile investment.