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T20 star Tom Banton wants to play for Mumbai Indians in IPL 2020

Tom Banton, the T20 batting phenomenon of the year, is guaranteed to set off a bidding war in the IPL auction next month. The 21-year-old England batsman says he has always been a fan of Mumbai Indians.

By: Sports Desk | Published: November 24, 2019 8:23:49 pm
Tom Banton on way to a 28-ball 80 in the T10 League this week (Twitter/T10League)

Tom Banton, the T20 phenomenon of the year, has said he wants Mumbai Indians to pick him in the IPL auction next month.

“Playing in the IPL has been a dream from a very young age. You see the big crowds and the attention it has. I am in the IPL auction this year (December 19), so fingers crossed somebody picks me,” Banton told ESPNCricinfo.

He added, “As a kid, I have always loved watching Mumbai Indians. Then I had the good fortune of playing at the Wankhede for the England U-19 team. There was tremendous support at the ground then, even though we lost 5-0.”

According to Daily Mail, both Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings have enquired about Banton’s availability. While CSK could bring Banton in to replace released player Sam Billings, Mumbai Indians could also be looking to fill the absence of Evin Lewis with Banton.

The rise and rise of Tom Banton

Banton, who made his international debut earlier this month, has enjoyed a breakout year in T20 cricket this year. He just turned 21 earlier this month, but he has already become a hot property for T20 franchises around the world.

Banton has made jaws drop in several T20 leagues this year with his inventive shots – the hockey-style reverse slaps and the scoop deserving particular mention – and the volume of his runs.

Earlier this week, Banton smashed 80 off 28 balls for Qalandars in the ongoing T10 League in Abu Dhabi. He fell short of becoming the first batsman to score a century in the T10 format, but is likely to break many such records, sooner rather than later.

“Never thought I would have such a year at the start of 2019. I suppose once you are on a roll, you cannot stop,” Banton said about his form this year.

Banton’s breakout happened at the Vitality T20 Blast, England’s equivalent of the IPL, this year. He scored 549 runs this season at an average of 42.23 and a ferocious strike rate of 161.43.

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