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Summertime, when the livin' was easy

ESPNcricinfo staff
Today's countdown looks at players who had their season or two of fame at the IPL, only to fade away since

Paul Valthaty had a stellar 2011 season for Kings XI Punjab, with quick-fire innings at the top © AFP

Paul Valthaty, 463 runs from 14 games for Kings XI Punjab, IPL 2011

A top-order batsman who was part of India's Under-19 World Cup squad in 2002, along with Parthiv Patel, Irfan Pathan and Stuart Binny, Valthaty's moment under the sun came in IPL 2011, where he put up a series of blistering performances at the top of the Kings XI batting order, including an unbeaten 120 off 63 balls while chasing 189 against Chennai Super Kings. These led to a breakthrough into the Himachal Pradesh squad, for whom he played first-class and List A cricket. A series of single-digit scores in the next two seasons put an end to his IPL career, and he has not played a competitive game since April 2013.

Manpreet Gony,17 wickets from 16 games for Super Kings, IPL 2008

Gony shot into the limelight during the inaugural season of the IPL, finishing as Super Kings' joint-highest wicket-taker and 4th overall in the tournament. His performances, including a spell of 2 for 14 which set up his side's semi-final win against Kings XI, meant he was rewarded with a place in the Indian side for the Asia Cup that year, where he played his only two ODIs to date. Inconsistent form and injuries have meant he has since faded away, managing only 20 wickets in five subsequent seasons.

Swapnil Asnodkar, 311 runs from 9 games for Rajasthan Royals, IPL 2008

Not known as a T20 specialist before the IPL, Asnodkar was yet another talent toiling away in domestic cricket before punching well above his weight under Shane Warne's watch at Royals. Nicknamed "Goa Cannon" by Warne for his aggressive approach at the top of Royals' order, his captain's note to him read, "Set up the innings with clever stroke play and use your strong wrists. Run like a rabbit between the wickets. Must be one of the shining lights in the field." A shining light he was, over those 8 weeks, before his form deserted him in subsequent seasons. Still only 32, Asnodkar continues to ply his trade for Goa across all three formats.

Kamran Khan earned a reputation as an end-overs specialist during IPL 2009 © AFP

Kamran Khan, 9 wickets from 8 games for Royals, IPL 2009-10

A tennis-ball bowler who had no first-class experience when he was first spotted at a T20 tournament in Mumbai, Kamran Khan was picked after bowling Cape Cobras' Justin Ontong in a warm-up game ahead of the 2009 season in South Africa. Khan's slingy action and pace troubled established international stars in helpful conditions that season. After being reported for suspect action, Khan was unable to fashion a comeback in the tournament, but went on to make his first-class debut for Sri Lankan side Colts Cricket Club in 2013.

Saurabh Tiwary, 419 runs in 16 matches; strike rate of 136 for Mumbai Indians, IPL 2010

Tiwary remains active across formats for both state and franchise even today, but has come nowhere close to repeating his auction-value-inflating run in the 2010 season, where he was among the top 10 run-scorers and impressed with his boundary-hitting capability. As a result, in the 2011 auction, his price went up 40 times his value in 2008. His performances, though, are yet to get back to the heady summer of 2010.

Ashok Menaria, 400 runs in 29 matches, strike rate of 113 for Royals, IPL 2011-12

A former India U-19 captain who had never played a T20 game before the 2011 season, Menaria impressed with his all-round skills for Royals over two IPL seasons. A free-stroking middle-order batsman who bowls slow left-arm spin occasionally, his promise drew comparisons with the likes of Yuvraj Singh for a while. He has been unsold in the last few auctions, and continues to represent Rajasthan across formats.

Yusuf Abdulla, 14 wickets from 9 matches for Kings XI, IPL 2009

Signed as a replacement for Brett Lee for the first part of the 2009 season in South Africa, the portly left-arm seamer impressed in familiar conditions, topping the wicket charts at one point. His impressive season earned him a place in the South Africa side for the 2010 World T20 in the West Indies. By 2011, his career had nose-dived significantly, with persistent injuries making things worse. He continues to play the odd List A fixture for KwaZulu-Natal Inland, but it is clear that his career is unlikely to experience the crests of 2009 again.

Joginder Sharma, 8 wickets from 8 matches for Super Kings, IPL 2008

The months between September 2007 and May 2008 must now feel like a dream for Joginder Sharma, who became MS Dhoni's go-to man in tight situations. In the inaugural season, Joginder developed a knack of dismissing big guns, and his victims included Sachin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh, Virender Sehwag, Dwayne Bravo and Jacques Kallis. He struggled to get game time in the seasons that followed, and now works as a cop with the Haryana Police, apart from representing his state in cricket.

Alfonso Thomas' tight bowling proved a valuable asset for Pune Warriors in 2011 © Associated Press

Alfonso Thomas, 11 wickets from 11 games for Pune Warriors, IPL 2011

A journeyman for the best part of his career, the South African had a late-career bloom as a T20 gun-for-hire across franchise competitions. His performances in the Champions League T20 for Somerset led to Pune Warriors signing him for the 2011 IPL season, in which he nailed his spot as one of their four overseas players with his disciplined bowling and ice-cold temperament. He returned to the tournament as Delhi Daredevils' bowling consultant in 2015, and remains the format's fifth-highest wicket-taker of all time.

Veer Pratap Singh, 10 wickets from 9 matches for Deccan Chargers, IPL 2012

At 21 years of age, Veer Pratap was considered among the most promising Indian pacemen at that time, and duly found a buyer in Deccan Chargers in the 2012 auction. He impressed with his wicket-taking abilities, despite his economy rate being on the higher side at 8.70. Although Kolkata Knight Riders picked him up in the 2014 auction, he is yet to play an IPL game since 2012, and has not played a T20 game for almost two years.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  •   Vijay Srinivas on March 14, 2017, 19:09 GMT

    Nobody has mention Tirumalasetti Suman. He played in the initial IPL matches, and has been a hard-hitting batsman, but he also dwindled out later.

  • AayushVarma18 on March 14, 2017, 17:30 GMT

    Why is Alfonso Thomas on the list? He may not have had too big an IPL career, but he has made a huge mark on the T20 cricket scene. He was a late-bloomer, and so ended up as the bowling consultant for DD as he is probably retired. I wouldn't call that fading away.

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