Sanjay Manjrekar, a former Indian cricketer, suggests that the Gujarat Titans (GT) should consider recruiting Australian batting sensation Steve Smith to fill in for Kane Williamson in their IPL 2023 team. Williamson suffered a knee injury in the first match of the season and will be unable to participate in the tournament.
Since Williamson played a crucial role as the No.3 batsman for GT, the team will need to find a suitable replacement quickly. According to Manjrekar, Smith’s playing style aligns well with what the Titans had anticipated from Williamson in the No.3 position.
Sanjay Manjrekar names Kane Williamson’s replacement
Manjrekar, in an interview with Star Sports, also mentioned how Smith’s leadership skills would be beneficial to GT’s captain Hardik Pandya, who could use some support.
“Steve Smith is the kind of player they want, somebody who can play all kinds of gears. Plus with the new rules which he finds very cool, I’d love to see Smith’s’ captaincy, we saw that and we were raving about it in the India-Australia series. And Hardik Pandya needs a bit of help, he confessed, ‘I have no idea what my tactics are, so I’m going to leave it to the others.’ So, that could be a great call actually,” he said.
Although Steve Smith understands that franchises may need to find replacements due to injuries during the IPL 2023 auction, he believes that he may not be given the opportunity to participate in the tournament since he did not include himself in the auction.
“I don’t know if I’ll qualify, I didn’t even put myself in the auctions. So I don’t think there’s even a possibility. So, maybe next year, we will see where we go. I think just coming up against the best players around the world, the learning experiences from each of those, sharing dressing rooms with guys like MS Dhoni, Jos Buttler, guys like that, It’s been incredible, and the IPL has just been unbelievable since its start 15 years ago and it just continues to grow and grow,” Smith said.
GT may have to rely on B Sai Sudharsan again at the No.3 position when they face Delhi Capitals in their upcoming match.