Anil Kumble reveals why Punjab Kings picked Odian Smith

The Indian Premier League (IPL) is expected to be held from late March to late May 2022 and the West Indies Cricket Association (CWI) has confirmed that all West Indies players will be eligible to participate in the Marquee T20 League.

During the two-day mega auction in Bangalore, 14 West Indies players were picked by the IPL franchise and three players, including Kieran Pollard, Sunil Narine and Andre Russell, were retained before the auction.

Meanwhile, After the end of the mega auction, Anil Kumble, spoke to Star Sports on the auction dynamic and what made them go behind certain players.

Odean Smith was one of the top buys for the franchise at 6 crores. The West Indian all-rounder is currently in India for a series against India.

“He has showcased his power, bowling skills and also his batting skills and we saw that on display against India here in the one-dayers, so we have been tracking the players for a while and we are very glad that someone like Odean as an all-rounder for us we have been able to secure” said Kumble.

Smith was quite impressive in the second ODI he played against India, as he picked up the big wicket of Virat Kohli by setting him up nicely and finished with figures of 2 for 29 in 7 overs.

And then Scored a 20-ball 24 with two sixes and flexed his big muscles in the process. He continued his good run in the third ODI as well where he scored an 18 ball 36, in which he hit three huge maximums and three fours as well.

He has been a wicket-taker with the ball with 36 wickets in 33 games in the format and was one of the shining stars in the Caribbean Premier League 2021 also we see his performance at T10, which got him noticed by the IPL franchises.

The Punjab Kings (PBKS) shared a video of Odean Smith speaking to the fans and saying,

“Hi Punjab Family, Odean Smith here. Really grateful for the opportunity you guys have given to me. Really hoping to join you guys soon. And hopefully, this year we will hold the trophy.” Odean says 

He also spoke on the varying auction dynamics and the problem of demand and supply in the IPL. Many franchises including Punjab could not get all the players that they were looking for in the mega auction.

“The auction dynamics are very very different and you have to be nimble and that is something we realised in the last one and half days. You have to be even more nimble during this auction then the previous ones.”

He also stressed on the leadership role and building a culture within the franchise looking forward to a brand new season.

“I think, in a T20, the format or any new squad you want to put together, you would want to get some quality players, and also the leadership group, so yes the focus was not just on the players that we want to acquire but also acquire some leadership groups and build a culture” Kumble concluded saying.

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