Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on Wednesday (October 6) confirmed Dominic Drakes as their replacement signing for the injured Sam Curran. The West Indies all-rounder has been roped in for the remaining matches of the IPL 2021 in UAE in a like-for-like arrangement following Curran’s lower-back injury.
With Curran ruled out of the rest of the tournament for CSK, and also England’s T20 World Cup squad, MS Dhoni and company have handed Drakes his maiden IPL gig in the hope to keep their existing combination and plans going.
Drakes, like Curran, is a left-hand batter and left-arm medium-fast bowler. The 23-year-old was interestingly part of Mumbai Indians’ (MI) camp as a net bowler but will now join the CSK squad for their last league stage encounter and the playoffs.
But what got MI and now CSK interested in Dominic Drakes?
His performance in this year’s edition of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL). In a breakthrough CPL 2021, Dominic Drakes performed exceedingly well for St Kitts & Nevis Patriots, helping them pull off their maiden title in the history of Caribbean’s premier domestic T20 tournament.
Drakes picked up 16 wickets from his 11 outings for the SKNP with an economy rate of 8.56. The batter struck only 102 runs in the competition but at a strike-rate of 161.90. His tally included a pivotal knock of 48 not out off just 24 balls in the final versus the St Lucia Kings, for which he was awarded the ‘Player of the Match’.
Dominic Drakes, MOM in CPL 2021 final and now he is Super King at Chennai in IPL 2021.pic.twitter.com/mHhNBbDSEC
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) October 6, 2021
The great run in CPL 2021 must’ve caught the eyes of MI’s fantastic scouting team and their team management and Drakes went to UAE with the five-time champions as a net bowler. And now in another positive turn of events for him, he has replaced Curran for CSK for the remaining bit of IPL 2021.
Curran had a poor tournament for CSK this year, going for 9.93 runs per over with 9 scalps from his 9 games and making just 56 runs from his four innings with the bat. The English all-rounder got to play only two matches in the second half where he conceded 0/56 against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and 0/55 versus Rajasthan Royals (RR), respectively, from his four overs.
Coming back to Dominic Drakes, the cricketer has a decent T20 record to his name in the early days of his domestic career. He has taken 20 wickets with an economy rate of 8.97 and made 153 runs at a strike-rate of 159.37. At CSK, Drakes will also get the opportunity to be with his CPL captain Dwayne Bravo.
Drakes is son of former West Indies cricketer Vasbert Drakes, who played 12 Tests and 34 ODIs at the international level. Vasbert, notably, was West Indies’ top wicket-taker at the 2003 World Cup in South Africa with 16 scalps from just six matches at 13.0 per piece.
Following in his father’s footsteps, the Drakes will hope he can leave his mark for CSK if he gets his opportunity and soon be playing for the West Indies.