Aussie $3.9m speedsters brutally snubbed

The Punjab Kings brutally dropped Australian bowlers Jhye Richardson and Riley Meredith ahead of Wednesday evening’s Indian Premier League match against David Warner’s Sunrisers Hyderabad.

To bolster their batting attack, Punjab omitted the pace duo to make room for all-rounders Moises Henriques and Fabian Allen.

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Speaking at the toss, Punjab captain KL Rahul said the decision was based on the conditions in Chennai, and player rotation should be expected throughout the season.

“We know who our core group is, there will be one or two changes according to conditions,” Rahul explained.

“The players have been given their roles. The more games we play, we’ll get better. There are youngsters and we need to give them some time to get used to the pressure of the IPL.”

Meredith and Richardson both dropped for #PBKS as they look to bolster their batting. #SRH will again look to Warner to turn their flagging fortunes around. Bhuvi must do better as well. #IPL2021

The Kings snapped up Richardson and Meredith for whopping seven-figure sums at this year’s IPL Auction, securing their services for AUD $2.48 million and AUD $1.42 million respectively.

Richardson was the highest wicket-taker in last summer’s Big Bash League, snaring 29 scalps at 16.31.

Meanwhile, Meredith became the IPL’s most expensive uncapped cricketer in history, the Tasmanian capable of exceeding 150km/h.

However, the Aussie duo struggled to validate their worth in the opening three games of the glamorous T20 tournament, collectively taking five wickets at 44.40.

Richardson and Meredith combined to leak 10.57 runs per over in the three matches — the West Australian’s bowling figures of 1/55 against the Rajasthan Royals ranks as the most expensive bowling spell in this year’s competition.

However, cricket superstars Shikhar Dhawan, Steve Smith, Rishabh Pant and Jos Buttler were among their scalps.

Jhye Richardson of the Scorchers.Source:Getty Images

Punjab’s move to axe Richardson and Meredith ultimately backfired, with Henriques (14 off 17 balls) and Allen (six off 11 balls) both failing to muster a boundary at Chennai’s MA Chidambaram Stadium.

The Kings were eventually rolled for 120, setting Hyderabad a modest target to chase for victory.

Afghanistan tweaker Rashid Khan once again starred with the ball, conceding just 17 runs from his four economic overs, while Sunrisers teammate Khaleel Ahmed claimed three wickets.

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