As part of our partnership with All Over Cricket, we take a look at four young players who have impressed in the T20 World Cup so far. Ronan takes a look at Ruben Trumpelmann and Lahiru Kumara, meanwhile Jay analyses Curtis Campher and Mohammad Saifuddin.
RUBEN TRUMPELMANN (Namibia)
So far in this World Cup, almost every fan has developed a soft spot for Namibia (maybe apart from the Dutch), and left arm strapping seamer with the emphatic name Ruben Trumpelmann has impressed.
The Namibians have an unconventional attack largely consisting of left armers which isn’t seen too often. Trumpelmann is a key cog of that, although in the World Cup he hasn’t been used the same way as he was in the warm-up games. During the lead up to the tournament, the 23-year-old operated as a top and tail bowler. Of the 28.2 overs he bowled, only four were in the middle overs. However, during in the World Cup, three of his seven overs have come in the middle. Although that is largely because of the Eagles only defending 96 against Sri Lanka, so they chased it way before the death overs.
According to CricViz data, he has had a bowling impact of -4 and -5 in the first two matches, but perhaps the best is yet to come when he is used in his preferred role. Pierre de Bruyn has a whole host of options in his attack which was clear to see when they used eight consecutive different bowlers against Sri Lanka.
Trumpelmann’s economy rate is equally as good against left handers as it is right handers, with him able to regularly hit that hard 6-8m length.
His numbers since the warm-up series versus the Titans up until the World Cup opener consists of the following:
|Dot Ball %||58||50||37.5|
LAHIRU KUMARA (Sri Lanka)
Sri Lanka’s high pace attack has caused problems in their opening two matches, and Lahiru Kumara has been a key part of it. The 24-year-old grabbed 2/9 from 3.3 overs against Namibia and 2/22 from his four overs again Ireland.
The pace and bounce was too much for Harry Tector as he gloved one through to keeper Kusal Perera. He’s regularly clocking around 88mph as part of a sharp Sri Lankan attack.
In his international T20 career, he is yet to take a wicket in the powerplay. However, this isn’t too much of an issue with the seam of Chameera and Karunaratne, supported by the spin of Theekshana the main men operating in the first six overs. His economy rate during overs 7-11 is 5.89, taking two wickets. His most prolific stages of the game for wickets are in overs 12-16 and 17-20 where he’s grabbed four wickets each.
With Mickey Arthur’s spot in the Super 12’s secured, his next step will be continuing to impress against the world’s best. Sri Lanka were almost written off before the tournament began, with many fans expecting them to suffer defeats and struggle to make the next stage. However, so far, they haven’t put a foot wrong and look a solid unit at the moment.
CURTIS CAMPHER (Ireland)
“This unknown Irish bowler Curtis Campher has stunned the cricket world with a mind-boggling bowling spell at the T20 World Cup.”
This was the infuriating line in a major Australian publication after Irish all-rounder Curtis Campher claimed four wickets in four balls to stomp a mud hole in the Netherlands’ middle order.
In spite of the fact that he’s one of only three players to take a “double hat-trick” in Men’s T20Is, Campher’s role primarily is with the bat. On the back of a productive run for the Ireland Wolves on their tour of Namibia in February 2020, where he struck a match-winning 62* off 31 in the final T20, he was drafted into Ireland’s squad for their first ODI Super League series against England. Coming in at number seven, he rescued Ireland from 28/5 and 78/5 in the first and second ODIs, respectively with consecutive half centuries.
Ireland sorely missed his stabilizing influence when they were upset 2-1 in the Netherlands against understrength Dutch team missing many of their county professionals.
In spite of a strike rate of 141 in T20 cricket, he is yet to replicate his Irish Interprovincial form for the national team. However, aged 22, he’s already developed a reputation as a player who is both level-headed and combative.
We also wrote about Ireland’s hat-trick hero in our latest newsletter, read here: https://scoutingcricket.substack.com/
MOHAMMAD SAIFUDDIN (Bangladesh)
Bangladesh came out with aggression and intensity against Scotland in their opening fixture on the first day of the Men’s T20 World Cup. Mohammad Saifuddin backed up a frugal first two overs by the Tigers’ bowlers by picking up the wicket of Kyle Coetzer with a pinpoint accurate yorker that crashed into the inner half of off stump.
It was a good demonstration of how dangerous Saifuddin can be when he gets it right. He backed this up in Bangladesh’s second game against Oman, where he only conceded 16 in his four over spell to help Bangladesh defend 153.
However, against higher quality opposition, the Bangladeshi all-rounder often travels the distance. He conceded 7.18 runs an over for his 13 wickets in 7 games during the 2019 World Cup, where he missed his attempted yorkers on several occasions.
To his credit, he’s since forged a reputation as a capable all-phase bowler in the sub-continent, conceding just 7.2 runs per over in 18 T20Is since the start of 2019.
While he’s an underrated batter with an average of 36.20 in ODIs, the presence of a strong Bangladeshi batting core has meant that he often walks in to bat at nine. Having been earmarked as an international prospect from the age group level, this former Under-19 star will have to continue firing with the ball if he hopes to retain a spot that many have argued should instead go to a specialist bowler.
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