When the IPL kicked off eleven years ago, it was a one-of-a-kind league and garnered massive attention across the cricketing fraternity. Now, most of the major cricket playing nations have a T20 league of their own and performances in those are often used as an indicator to gauge how foreign players will perform in the biggest T20 league in the planet.
As we move closer to the 2019 IPL season, here's a look at some of those foreign recruits who have been in stellar form in other leagues.
Joe Denly (Kolkata Knight Riders)
The England all-rounder is among the most underrated players going into the upcoming season of IPL. Bought for his base price of Rs 1 crore, Denly is a more than a handy batsman at the top of the order and a wily leg-spinner. He shone in the T20 League in England — the Vitality Blast in 2018 — with an all-round display. Picking up 20 wickets in 13 matches, Denly finished as the seventh-highest wicket-taker in the season. In addition, he scored 409 runs at an average of 37.18 with a superb strike rate of 145.03, making him a a key component in Kent's campaign. In the last two seasons of the T20 Blast, Denly has made three hundreds and scored nearly 1000 runs. At KKR, Denly will add firepower with bat and ball and should be in their starting XI from the first game.
T20 leagues played in: Vitality Blast, Pakistan Super League, Big Bash League
Most recent good show: Vitality Blast 2018
Matches - 13, Runs - 409, Avg - 37.18, Wickets - 20, Eco - 7.76
Colin Ingram (Delhi Capitals)
Ingram's stock has grown by leaps and bounds after he transformed himself into a power-hitting giant. The South African batsman, who was an accumulator in his early years, honed his T20 game under the guidance of power-hitting coach Julian Wood. With his transformation as a player in the shortest format of the game, Ingram started receiving deals from T20 leagues from across the globe. He has performed excellently in several leagues with his consistent middle-order hitting and this year slammed the highest individual score in the Pakistan Super League's history with a 127 not out off 59 balls for Karachi Kings against Quetta Gladiators. He did well earlier in the Vitality Blast 2018 too with 430 runs in 11 matches at an average of 53.75. Ingram is likely to play a big role this season for Delhi, which needed a seasoned campaigner in the middle-order to guide the youngsters in the batting line-up.
T20 leagues played in: Vitality Blast, Pakistan Super League, Big Bash League, Caribbean Premier League, Afghanistan Premier League
Most recent good show: Pakistan Super League 2019
Matches - 8*, Runs - 226, HS - 127*, SR - 154.79
Shimron Hetmyer (Royal Challengers Bangalore)
The talented Windies big hitter has been making headlines for his consistency in clearing the ropes and has been excelling across formats in the International arena. Hetmyer was sold for a whopping Rs 4.2 crore at the 2019 IPL auction after proving his mettle in the format for the Windies. RCB needed some firepower down the order and Hetmyer could well don the finisher's role in the star-studded batting line-up. He has recent form behind him in the format, having finished as the third highest run-scorer in the Caribbean Premier League in 2018 for Guyana Amazon Warriors with 440 runs in 12 matches at an average of 40 and a strike rate of nearly 150.
Most recent good show: Caribbean Premier League 2018
Matches - 12, Runs - 440, Avg - 40.00, SR - 148.14, 100s - 1
Oshane Thomas (Rajasthan Royals)
Oshane Thomas recently made cricket fans sit up and take note of him when he picked up a five-wicket haul in the final match of the ODI series against England to clean up the visitors for 113. A hit-the-deck seamer with good pace and disconcerting bounce, Thomas is a pacer in the mould of the erstwhile Windies bowling icons. He first caught the eyes on the tour of India for troubling the Indian top-order and is in terrific form in the shortest format of the game, having picked up 18 wickets in 10 matches — the second-most by any bowler and the most by a pacer — for Jamaica Tallawahs in the Caribbean Premier League 2018. The Royals might look to use him in tandem with Jofra Archer to make early inroads in the opposition's batting line-up.
Most recent good show: Caribbean Premier League 2018
Matches - 10, Wickets - 18, Avg - 17.66, Eco - 8.36
Nicholas Pooran (Kings XI Punjab)
The Windies wicketkeeper-batsman was among the most highly rated players to take part in 2014 Under-19 World Cup campaign. A belligerent 143 in the quarterfinals of the tournament against Australia — taking them from 70/8 to 208 — made him a household name at a young age. He followed that up with telling performances in the Caribbean Premier League and arrives at Kings XI Punjab on the back of a superb showing in the recently-concluded Bangladesh Premier League. Pooran made 379 runs at an average of 47.37 and clubbed 28 sixes, the joint-most in the season.
T20 leagues played in: Bangladesh Premier League, Caribbean Premier League, Pakistan Super League
Most recent good show: Bangladesh Premier League 2019
Matches - 11, Runs - 379, Avg - 47.37, SR - 159.91, Sixes - 28
Mitchell Santner (Chennai Super Kings)
Santner's influence in T20 matches cannot be underestimated given that he is an economical bowler who creates pressure from his end. Having missed the whole of last season due to injury, Santner will hope to make an impact at Chennai Super Kings this year after good show in the Super Smash, domestic Twenty20 cricket competition in New Zealand, for Northern Knights where his restrictive bowling helped the likes of Scott Kuggeleijn and Ish Sodhi pick regular wickets from the other end. At CSK, he will have attacking bowlers like Dwayne Bravo and Lungi Ngidi bowling in tandem with him and could be the second spinner plus all-rounder in the defending champions' side.
Most recent good show: Super Smash 2018/19
Matches - 7, Wickets - 9, Avg - 19.11, Eco - 6.88
Marcus Stoinis (Royal Challengers Bangalore)
Marcus Stoinis has all it takes to be an influential player in a T20 league. He starred in the recently-concluded Big Bash for Melbourne Stars, opening the batting and scoring at a frenetic rate of 130.63. He finished as the third-highest run-scorer making 533 runs in the season and was equally effective with the ball, varying the pace cleverly in the death overs to pick up 14 wickets at a bowling average of 16.14. At RCB, he might be used at the top in place of Quinton de Kock, who moved to Mumbai Indians, and will also play a role in the death overs where the franchise is searching for a reliable bowler.
Most recent good show: Big Bash League 2018/19
Matches - 13, Runs - 533, Avg - 53.30, SR - 130.63, Wickets - 14, Eco - 8.37