BBL hit, IPL miss?

Every year, stars from other major T20 leagues around the world get picked up at the IPL auction, often for big money. Almost always, these are unheralded talents in Indian and subcontinental conditions, picked on current form and more than a tinge of recency bias. Here's a look at how six such talents - four of them IPL debutants - have fared in IPL 2018 so far.

D'Arcy Short

Role: Opening batsman and part-time spinner

Where he made his name: Big Bash League

BBL 2017-18 performance: 572 runs at 57.20, SR 148.57 (#1 run-getter)

How he has fared in IPL 2018

Short did not have the ideal start to the tournament, getting run-out in his first two innings, fuelling all sorts of "Short of the crease" puns on social media. After four games in which he crossed 11 only once, he found himself on the bench, and sides seemed to have worked him out with ample doses of spin in the Powerplay. Since then, he has come back to find traces of form that made him such a big hit in the past two BBL seasons, but has come nowhere near matching his INR 4 crore ($0.63 million) price tag yet.

Mujeeb ur Rahman

Role: Mystery spinner

Where he made his name: Under-19 cricket, ODIs and Shpageeza Cricket League

IPL 2018 performance: 12 wickets from 9 innings at ER 6.85 (joint #3 wicket-taker)

How he has fared in IPL 2018

Seldom has any talent from outside cricket's elite been in as much demand as Afghanistan's spinners are in T20 leagues today. If Rashid Khan and Mohammad Nabi kicked things off last year, Mujeeb ur Rahman's exploits in youth cricket fetched him a call-up from Bangladesh Premier League side Comilla Victorians even before this year's Under-19 World Cup.

Mujeeb's rise since then has been meteoric, and if IPL faithful were surprised at his inclusion ahead of Chris Gayle for Kings XI's opening game, he quickly put any doubts to rest with two wickets on debut, before bamboozling Virat Kohli with a wrong 'un days later. He has featured in each of Kings XI's nine games so far, and, like compatriot Rashid, been used by his captain to bowl the most important overs of the innings. Already one of the stand-out stars in the tournament, he is among the frontrunners for this season's Emerging Player award.

Evin Lewis

Role: Opening batsman

Where he made his name: Bangladesh Premier League, Caribbean Premier League, T20Is

CPL 2017-18 performance: 371 runs at 41.22, SR 184.57 (#4 run-getter)

How he has fared in IPL 2018

Lewis' fearsome hitting ability, on view during his twin T20I hundreds against India at strike rates in excess of 200, has drawn comparisons to Chris Gayle at his peak, and landed him a maiden IPL deal with Mumbai Indians. A standout aspect of Lewis' batting is his hitting prowess against spinners, a relatively rare skillset among overseas batsmen in the IPL. Lewis has started nine out of his side's ten games so far, smashing 247 runs at the top of the order, as one half of a marauding opening partnership with one of the stars of the tournament, Suryakumar Yadav. His tendency to play out a high percentage of dot balls in the Powerplay has come in for some scrutiny, bringing down his strike rate to an uncharacteristic 134.97, but he has done his job consistently enough to have justified his INR 3.8 crore ($0.59 million) price tag.

Jofra Archer

Roles: Fast bowler who has excelled in the death overs, hard-hitting lower-order batsman

Where he made his name: Natwest T20 Blast, Bangladesh Premier League and Big Bash League

Performance in T20s since 2017: 53 wickets in 39 innings at ER 7.80

How he has fared in IPL 2018

Nursing a side strain, Archer was late to join the Royals squad, sat out a few games on arrival, and finally got to play in their sixth game of the season. His game-changing spell of 4-0-22-3, including two wickets off consecutive searing yorkers at the death, won him a Man of the Match award on debut. He delivered a near-carbon-copy of that spell in his next game against Sunrisers Hyderabad, before two middling performances since then. If early signs are an indication, Archer's taken to the IPL faster than most unheralded overseas talents, and could well be a force to reckon with in the years to come.

Ben Laughlin

Role: Fast bowler who has excelled in the death overs

Where he made his name: Big Bash League, New Zealand Super Smash

BBL 2017-18 performance: 16 wickets from 12 innings at ER 8.36 (joint #2 wicket-taker)

How he has fared in IPL 2018

Royals got an in-form Laughlin at a steal, picking him up for his base price of INR 50 lakh ($ 78,000), and he has finally got consistent game time in the tournament, after dugout-warming for the best part of the past five seasons with Chennai Super Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad. He started off as one of Royals' best bowlers, playing a key role in defending 71 off six overs in a rain-curtailed match against Delhi Daredevils. Since then, his form has taken a downturn, in sync with his side's, and he has not played any of their last four games, as they have turned to the more all-round abilities of Archer.

Billy Stanlake

Role: Beanpole fast bowler with express pace

Where he made his name: Big Bash League

BBL 2017-18 performance: 11 wickets from 10 innings at ER 6.47

How he has fared in IPL 2018

Just like Laughlin, Stanlake was among the steals of the auction, snapped up by Sunrisers Hyderabad for his base price of INR 50 lakh, coming off an excellent BBL season for champions Adelaide Strikers. Unlike former employers Royal Challengers Bangalore, Sunrisers saw his express pace and bounce as the one missing link in their attack, playing him in four of their first five games, before an injury ruled him out of the tournament. Stanlake shone in the Powerplay and the middle overs during his brief stint this season, picking up crucial wickets, even if at a profligate economy rate at times. In short, there were enough indications to justify why Ricky Ponting rates him so highly.

The others

Alex Hales finally got his IPL debut after nearly ten games on the bench over two seasons, and started with successive scores of 45 at the top of Sunrisers' batting order.

Heinrich Klaasen, picked as Steven Smith's replacement based on his exploits against India's wristspinners in South Africa, has managed seven runs from two innings.

Ben Dwarshuis of BBL fame, South Africa's Cameron Delport and Javon Searles of CPL's Trinbago Knight Riders haven't got a game yet for their sides.

All stats as of May 7, before the Rajasthan Royals v Kings XI Punjab game