IPL 2012 April 28, 2012

Clarke shifts focus to IPL

ESPNcricinfo staff
41

With a successful tour of the West Indies completed, Australia captain Michael Clarke has now shifted his focus to what will be his first stint at the IPL. Clarke is expected to arrive in India on April 30, to join his franchise, Pune Warriors. This will be something of a Twenty20 return for Clarke, who last played in the shortest format in October 2010.

"The crowds look fantastic [at the IPL] and it's going to be nice. To be honest with you, to be back playing some Twenty20 cricket, I'm looking forward to that. I've never been to the IPL. I've said for a long time that when the opportunity comes up and I feel that it's right for me, I'd love to get over there and have a crack and see what it's like," Clarke said after the Dominica Test. "I am looking forward to it. We [Australia] have a good break this winter. I've only got two one-day tours the whole winter, so if I was ever going to go this is the opportunity."

In 2009, Clarke had pulled out of the IPL auction, citing Australia's busy schedule. He then retired from Twenty20 internationals in January 2011 in order to focus on ODIs and Tests. In fact, the only domestic Twenty20 games he has played were six matches way back in 2004, for Hampshire in England.

Clarke said he is happy to play under former India captain Sourav Ganguly and observe his method of working. "I think that Sourav's always been a nice guy. I've always got along with him well and I look forward to playing under him. It seems like he's doing a really good job as captain-coach over there, I've spoken to a couple of the boys and they seem to be really happy about how things are. So, yeah, for me it's an eye-opener."

At the time of signing Clarke, Warriors captain Ganguly had said the franchise were interested in Clarke, despite his lack of Twenty20 experience, since he has all-round ability. "He can bat and he can bowl. He is a big player," Ganguly had told ESPNcricinfo. Ganguly will now be hoping that Clarke's arrival will help thwart what has been a poor run for Warriors - the team had begun the tournament well, winning three of their first four games, but have since lost four of five.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on April 30, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    He might turn out to be a bigger asset as a bowler than as a batsman , Watch out ! And his fielding is a huge plus for any side in any format ..

  • kathikiran on April 30, 2012, 7:22 GMT

    mike s not good t20 batsman but he s a good talented international batsman i make sure tat mike himself says he s in prime form with bat in his carer & now he s proving good batsman than any other in world & too proving as a success captain . recently he proved he s good with bowlling by taking 5 wicket haul agaist wi .................. as i m big fan of SOURAV DADA GANGULY i m supporting pune warriors india but with some slow batting of uttappa n failure of samules recently costa two big matches for pune & especially 4 crucial points .. i m sure DADA will bounce back with his batting ability n with his captain tactics n now clarke inclusion will surely helps pune warriors to bounce back against DC in hyd....all d best pune all d best dada n mike welcome to ipl

  • on April 30, 2012, 0:15 GMT

    pune warriors have a match winning openerTamim iqbal came from bangladesh.who got back to back 4 half century recent asia cup.bangladest beat srilanka and india.in final bangldesh lose to pakistan in final by 2 runs.i dont know why ganguly and pune did bad with tamom iqbal.....

  • Meety on April 29, 2012, 6:22 GMT

    @Pravski - apart from the fact he is a) a good bowler b) a better fielder than most & c) a very very good cricketing brain - you may be surprised how little bench time he actually has!

  • jonesy2 on April 29, 2012, 6:04 GMT

    he will light up the place somehow. the great man is pure magic

  • No_1_again on April 29, 2012, 5:57 GMT

    Who cares about IPL? It will ruin your cricketing future Clarke! Come home and rest! Test cricket is the way to go. IPL is good only for how ground bullies.

  • Pravski on April 29, 2012, 4:50 GMT

    Statistically Clarke is a very poor T20 batsman. Only one 50 in 40 matches with a strike rate of only 108, you will see him warming the bench for most of the IPL.

  • Kyle_Jones235 on April 29, 2012, 2:16 GMT

    Anyway, should be interesting seeing Clarke playing for Pune. They definetly need to strengthen their batting line up. Jayawardene and Dravid are very technical batsmen and have had success so far in the tournement so there is nothing to say that Clarke can't find some form either, he's also known for playing well in the subcontinent so hopefully things turn out well for him. But out of all the aussies I'm looking forward to seeing Warner the most. Warner and Sehwag with the form he has right now should be devastating.

  • Maccanui on April 28, 2012, 23:04 GMT

    Fair enough to Clarke for wanting to take a paid holiday in the IPL and have a bit of a laugh with everyone else but hopefully it doesn't impact his game in the proper forms of cricket because staying away from the fun stuff has clearly benefited him a great deal. The guy is on fire as captain of Australia at the moment. Will be good for him to have a break from cricket in India though and get on the lash with the rest of the overseas players.

  • Meety on April 28, 2012, 22:36 GMT

    @Something_Witty - I would prefer him to stay away from T20 altogether. When he was playing T20 (& assuming no back troubles), I'd of had him batting @#7 & bowling 4 overs of offspin - I think his bowling would of made him a T20 bowling allrounder. As it is, there are always question marks over his fitness, & I'd prefer him not to be there. However, one added bonus to this that our tour of India is not too far away, so it could be considered a sorte!!!!!

  • on April 30, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    He might turn out to be a bigger asset as a bowler than as a batsman , Watch out ! And his fielding is a huge plus for any side in any format ..

  • kathikiran on April 30, 2012, 7:22 GMT

    mike s not good t20 batsman but he s a good talented international batsman i make sure tat mike himself says he s in prime form with bat in his carer & now he s proving good batsman than any other in world & too proving as a success captain . recently he proved he s good with bowlling by taking 5 wicket haul agaist wi .................. as i m big fan of SOURAV DADA GANGULY i m supporting pune warriors india but with some slow batting of uttappa n failure of samules recently costa two big matches for pune & especially 4 crucial points .. i m sure DADA will bounce back with his batting ability n with his captain tactics n now clarke inclusion will surely helps pune warriors to bounce back against DC in hyd....all d best pune all d best dada n mike welcome to ipl

  • on April 30, 2012, 0:15 GMT

    pune warriors have a match winning openerTamim iqbal came from bangladesh.who got back to back 4 half century recent asia cup.bangladest beat srilanka and india.in final bangldesh lose to pakistan in final by 2 runs.i dont know why ganguly and pune did bad with tamom iqbal.....

  • Meety on April 29, 2012, 6:22 GMT

    @Pravski - apart from the fact he is a) a good bowler b) a better fielder than most & c) a very very good cricketing brain - you may be surprised how little bench time he actually has!

  • jonesy2 on April 29, 2012, 6:04 GMT

    he will light up the place somehow. the great man is pure magic

  • No_1_again on April 29, 2012, 5:57 GMT

    Who cares about IPL? It will ruin your cricketing future Clarke! Come home and rest! Test cricket is the way to go. IPL is good only for how ground bullies.

  • Pravski on April 29, 2012, 4:50 GMT

    Statistically Clarke is a very poor T20 batsman. Only one 50 in 40 matches with a strike rate of only 108, you will see him warming the bench for most of the IPL.

  • Kyle_Jones235 on April 29, 2012, 2:16 GMT

    Anyway, should be interesting seeing Clarke playing for Pune. They definetly need to strengthen their batting line up. Jayawardene and Dravid are very technical batsmen and have had success so far in the tournement so there is nothing to say that Clarke can't find some form either, he's also known for playing well in the subcontinent so hopefully things turn out well for him. But out of all the aussies I'm looking forward to seeing Warner the most. Warner and Sehwag with the form he has right now should be devastating.

  • Maccanui on April 28, 2012, 23:04 GMT

    Fair enough to Clarke for wanting to take a paid holiday in the IPL and have a bit of a laugh with everyone else but hopefully it doesn't impact his game in the proper forms of cricket because staying away from the fun stuff has clearly benefited him a great deal. The guy is on fire as captain of Australia at the moment. Will be good for him to have a break from cricket in India though and get on the lash with the rest of the overseas players.

  • Meety on April 28, 2012, 22:36 GMT

    @Something_Witty - I would prefer him to stay away from T20 altogether. When he was playing T20 (& assuming no back troubles), I'd of had him batting @#7 & bowling 4 overs of offspin - I think his bowling would of made him a T20 bowling allrounder. As it is, there are always question marks over his fitness, & I'd prefer him not to be there. However, one added bonus to this that our tour of India is not too far away, so it could be considered a sorte!!!!!

  • mukesh_LOVE.cricket on April 28, 2012, 19:50 GMT

    i think pune has got it wrong here , clarke is no doubt among the world's best , but his impact in T20 is not going to be that great..@ cpt. meanster-- if i was clarke i would be more than happy to sign a big contract , and then enjoy my little stint in this IPL joke (or world's best t20 tournament) , the promos and the talk shows on tv looks more like that of a bollywod movie than any serious cricket

  • SamAsh07 on April 28, 2012, 18:50 GMT

    @zdrgn - Hussey can replace Albie Morkel, one match winning performance in like 8-9 games is rather stupid. Even so, CSK has alot of bowlers to make up for Husseys inclusion. Bravo, Jadeja, Raina, Jakati, Ashwin and Kulasekara (or Bollinger for Kula if needed). 6 bowlers are more than enough. Morkel needs to bench out.

  • Something_Witty on April 28, 2012, 18:23 GMT

    I can't be the only one who wishes Clarke would stay away from the hit and giggle stuff, am I? First of all, slogging is simply not his game, secondly Clarke's batting seemed to improve out of sight the moment he retired from T20. Maybe a coincidence, but I hope it doesn't regress now that he's back in the "on the up" and "through the line" leagues, I seem to remember most of his batting troubles circa 2010/11 came because he was pushing hard at the ball all the time, in defence and attack. T20 encourages going hard at the ball, I hope he knows what he's doing.

  • passionate_cricket_follower on April 28, 2012, 18:09 GMT

    @ansarri : what? r u kidding me? ryder was instrumental in the recent matches pune won. he's a match-winner! tamim should replace DADU in the side.

  • emon-28-78 on April 28, 2012, 16:33 GMT

    Michael Clarke is a very good player.He has a lot of experinces.But what about Tamim Iqbal?Tamim Iqbal hasn't picked yet.He is a world dashing opene.What does Pune want?Ryder isn't playing well,played well just 2 matches.I think 83 and 74.He got a lot of oppurtunaties,but he isn't experinced than Tamim.Tamim should be picked.Before the IPL Pune's coach arranged a practice match.Tamim did well.He scored 59 runs from 37 balls.I don't know why Tamim hasn't picked yet.Pune has played already 8 games.

  • Cpt.Meanster on April 28, 2012, 16:11 GMT

    Excuse me Pup ? so you are in the IPL to just see what it's like ? you are talking about the world's best T20 tournament. So please keep that in mind. Besides the IPL has to stop some players trying to make use of it as some sort of holiday travel. Clarke, PUNE doesn't need you. You will be benched all the time. You better take that plane straight to Sydney and put your feet up there. The IPL needs full commitment from every player involved. No more mid way entries should be allowed by the IPL commission. I hope they do something about this issue next season.

  • on April 28, 2012, 15:48 GMT

    DD iz becom stronger but K.P Iz real rocks star of IPL hope Warner show his full strenth pwer as k.p best of luck David Warnr

  • on April 28, 2012, 15:35 GMT

    Clarke you better take some rest.. They aint gonna let you play, you will be sitted on bench rest of the season.

  • on April 28, 2012, 14:15 GMT

    when exactly watson is coming..??

  • Trickstar on April 28, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    LoL Clarke playing T20 cricket, how the hell did he manage to get a gig playing, he's absolutely dire at it, hahaha he averages just over 20 at a strike rate just over 100 comedy bad, surely they're better Indian players around than him. The standard of player involved this year beggars belief, really poor Indian's who've hardly played a game and hopeless overseas players on top of that.

  • adnanadu on April 28, 2012, 12:45 GMT

    yeh he would be a good add to the pune warriors. remeber guys he s also a gr8 captain and specially australian. bring a pakistani plyer and then u would see the real change

    guys can u tell me that from which site ipl 5 highlights are downloaded bcoz no download option is there on youtube for ipl 5 highlights

  • zdrgn on April 28, 2012, 12:40 GMT

    @ sunil kumar,whom will hussey replace in csk? du plesis seems to be in good touch.

  • zenboomerang on April 28, 2012, 12:32 GMT

    Should be an interesting week or two coming up with some of the Oz players filtering into their IPL teams... Many Oz fans will be watching Clarke to see how he adapts to the shorter format as he shouldn't have any pressure on him that would be expected of him if playing for Oz... Just hope he has improved his S.R. in this format, as he used to struggle a bit early on... Still he should be used to the pitches after the WI series, so nothing to lose & a couple of good scores may see him playing more often... Good luck...

  • on April 28, 2012, 12:04 GMT

    Clarke's arrival is much needed for the Pune since they were on loosing streak.

  • ansarri on April 28, 2012, 11:08 GMT

    pune need to include Clarke and Tamim Iqbal in their side in replace of Jesse Ryder and Marlon Samules who have been out of form in the recent matches. if they want any success in this tournament.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on April 28, 2012, 10:35 GMT

    Please Clarke come to our country fast. Can't wait to see you in IPL. Priceless.

  • Rajeev129 on April 28, 2012, 9:45 GMT

    Delhi is really lucky, their fans are just started to worry about Kevin Pieterson, who is depart to England. But good news for them is that Warner is coming into the side to continue to keep them on top of the ladder.

    Overall its not DD who are eagerly waiting for conclusion of Aus-WI test series, its Rajasthan Royals. No one can replace Shane Watson in this form of the game. I am hoping that CA will allow him to bowl in this edition of IPL.

  • on April 28, 2012, 9:43 GMT

    The man to be watch out for is Shane Watson.He can do wonders to any team he is coming in.his abilities to bowl at the death will also help Rajasthan...

  • naga25french on April 28, 2012, 8:59 GMT

    Eagerly waiting for Clarke to play a IPL match .

  • on April 28, 2012, 8:14 GMT

    Come on clarke..we will waiting for ur arrival.. PWI surly come to top 4 in 5th IPL..

  • Sinhaya on April 28, 2012, 8:11 GMT

    Clarkey hopefully see you in Sri Lanka when you all play the ODIs against Pakistan this August. Like to see how you all handle Pakistan's spin four of Ajmal, Afridi, Hafeez and Rehman!

  • on April 28, 2012, 7:40 GMT

    People dont forget Watson for Rajasthan. RR will be a decisive one on the field from now on. About CSK, cant comment at the moment. However, Hussey will bring some good runs to the team. We can be assured of it. Very much mused abt Ben's usage for the rest of the matches. Honestly, Delhi will be a team to beat this season. And inclusion of Warner is surely a missile in the armory. Let the best strategical team wins. All the best to all out there.

  • Meety on April 28, 2012, 7:23 GMT

    Wonder if a strong performance will get him a gig as the captain for the SL W/Cup?

  • on April 28, 2012, 7:01 GMT

    Chennai Super kings need a Fast bowler very badly as Bollinger is not in the best of form..So,Hilfenhaus will be a great asset for them to lift up the team spirit..

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:35 GMT

    Now, an important phase of IPL is coming. In couple of days more overseas players are flooding in various team and to keep pace with the four men overseas players is now become more difficult for management as well as for the captains. By the inclusion of these new players I think Rajasthan, Delhi and Pune gains most as compare with other teams. As far as Pune is concerned I think they got a good all rounder in Clarke. They not only focus only on his all-rounder skills only but Sourav could be benefited by his captain skills which he displayed many a times, more recently in WI where he made his team victorious after deliberately conceding a lead. Though he modestly admiring Sourav's captain's skill but I think it is he who can make a big difference if dealt carefully.

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:32 GMT

    I think DD will lose some of its strength as petersen will not be there now..with england vs westindies test series to be underway soon. Pune on contrary will grow stronger as samuels will go but clark will come. Which adds up strength for pune .IF DINDA plays i think pune will be a very formidable force from here on.

  • AKS286 on April 28, 2012, 6:30 GMT

    apart from warner all will fail. rtan harris will be flop as usual in test and now in ipl hahahahahha

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:08 GMT

    Pune, DD, and RR will largely benefit from the returning players as they have struggled with their 4th foreign player.. can't say the same about chennai.. infact MSD might end up disrupting the team combination to accomodate hussey..

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:08 GMT

    Exciting times for rajasthan royals.The boost of shane watson's all round abilities would be helpful for them and may turn out to be their only silver lining.Clarke adds balance to the warriors side and would be better if he handles the captaincy of the warriors because of his maverick style. Not taking any credit away from Dada but the way clarke has led this new aussie side i think he can do wonders for the warrors.

  • soumyas on April 28, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    michal hussey shud have played for Deccan, and Warner shud have played for Kings XI...cud have balanced teams more...But they are already playing for strong sides, i dont know what delhi will do with Warner now?

  • on April 28, 2012, 5:47 GMT

    Already DD is stronger and now Warner joining them. DD will be the winner this time. Arrival of Hussey and Ben chennai will get little bit stronger.

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  • on April 28, 2012, 5:47 GMT

    Already DD is stronger and now Warner joining them. DD will be the winner this time. Arrival of Hussey and Ben chennai will get little bit stronger.

  • soumyas on April 28, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    michal hussey shud have played for Deccan, and Warner shud have played for Kings XI...cud have balanced teams more...But they are already playing for strong sides, i dont know what delhi will do with Warner now?

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:08 GMT

    Exciting times for rajasthan royals.The boost of shane watson's all round abilities would be helpful for them and may turn out to be their only silver lining.Clarke adds balance to the warriors side and would be better if he handles the captaincy of the warriors because of his maverick style. Not taking any credit away from Dada but the way clarke has led this new aussie side i think he can do wonders for the warrors.

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:08 GMT

    Pune, DD, and RR will largely benefit from the returning players as they have struggled with their 4th foreign player.. can't say the same about chennai.. infact MSD might end up disrupting the team combination to accomodate hussey..

  • AKS286 on April 28, 2012, 6:30 GMT

    apart from warner all will fail. rtan harris will be flop as usual in test and now in ipl hahahahahha

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:32 GMT

    I think DD will lose some of its strength as petersen will not be there now..with england vs westindies test series to be underway soon. Pune on contrary will grow stronger as samuels will go but clark will come. Which adds up strength for pune .IF DINDA plays i think pune will be a very formidable force from here on.

  • on April 28, 2012, 6:35 GMT

    Now, an important phase of IPL is coming. In couple of days more overseas players are flooding in various team and to keep pace with the four men overseas players is now become more difficult for management as well as for the captains. By the inclusion of these new players I think Rajasthan, Delhi and Pune gains most as compare with other teams. As far as Pune is concerned I think they got a good all rounder in Clarke. They not only focus only on his all-rounder skills only but Sourav could be benefited by his captain skills which he displayed many a times, more recently in WI where he made his team victorious after deliberately conceding a lead. Though he modestly admiring Sourav's captain's skill but I think it is he who can make a big difference if dealt carefully.

  • on April 28, 2012, 7:01 GMT

    Chennai Super kings need a Fast bowler very badly as Bollinger is not in the best of form..So,Hilfenhaus will be a great asset for them to lift up the team spirit..

  • Meety on April 28, 2012, 7:23 GMT

    Wonder if a strong performance will get him a gig as the captain for the SL W/Cup?

  • on April 28, 2012, 7:40 GMT

    People dont forget Watson for Rajasthan. RR will be a decisive one on the field from now on. About CSK, cant comment at the moment. However, Hussey will bring some good runs to the team. We can be assured of it. Very much mused abt Ben's usage for the rest of the matches. Honestly, Delhi will be a team to beat this season. And inclusion of Warner is surely a missile in the armory. Let the best strategical team wins. All the best to all out there.