Vivo IPL 2021: The newly rebranded Punjab Kings (PBKS) on Friday signed Australian pacer Nathan Ellis for the upcoming leg of the Vivo IPL 2021. Ellis is also picked by Cricket Australia as a reserve player for the Twenty20 World Cup 2021.
The development came soon after the franchise, Punjab Kings, learnt about the unavailability of Jhye Richardson and Riley Meredith. The two cricketers have been ruled out of the second leg of the Vivo IPL 2021.
PBKS confirmed the development and also informed that the franchise was totally unaware of the unavailability of Richardson and Meredith until yesterday. The announcement came after Cricket Australia’s (CA’s) press conference held a day before.
“We were not aware of the fitness status of Jhye and Riley until yesterday,” Punjab Kings team’s CEO Satish Menon said, confirming the signing to Cricbuzz. “We have signed Ellis as a replacement player. We will announce the second replacement in a day or two,” PBKS CEO said.
“We are in talks with a few players. Anil (Kumble, the head coach) will finalise one soon.”
Ellis, who has been a new signing for PBKS, picked up a brilliant hat-trick in the recent T20I series against Bangladesh. He removed Mahdmullah, Mehidy Hasan and Mustafizur Rahman in the final deliveries of the match to complete his hattrick. Nathan Ellis is the only cricketer to have a hat-trick on a T20I debut.
It is also noteworthy that Ellis went unsold in the January mini Auctions held of the IPL 2021.
The IPL franchises will now look to cover all its areas left due to the unavailability of the players. A few key players have been injured and will not take part in the upcoming season of the IPL while a few are skipping the tournament due to their personal reasons.
Rajasthan Royals (RR) pacer Jofra Archer was earlier ruled out for the entire year due to elbow injury while KKR pacer Pat Cummins will not participate in the tournament as he and his wife are expecting their first baby.