Rajasthan Royals have signed Evin Lewis and Oshane Thomas as the replacements for Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes for the second leg of IPL 2021. Jos Buttler had made himself unavailable due to the birth of his child, while Ben Stokes has taken indefinite break from cricket due to mental health reasons.
Lewis previously played IPL for Mumbai Indians in 2018 and 2019, and aggregated 430 runs with strike rate of 131.09 and the average of 26.87. The swashbuckling left-hander is the fifth-highest run getter for the West Indies in T20Is with 1318 runs including 103 sixes, only Chris Gayle has hit more (121) .
He is currently playing for St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in the ongoing CPL 2021 and has registered scores of 6, 62 and 30 in three games respectively.
Thomas, who is known to bowl a 140-plus kmph speed regularly, will be one of the four overseas fast-bowlers alongside Chris Morris, Mustafizur Rahman and the uncapped South African Gerald Coetzee. Thomas played for the Royals in 2019, when he took five wickets in four games at an economy of 7.90.
The right-arm quick is the second player from Barbados Royals to be picked for Rajasthan Royals, after New Zealand’s Glenn Phillips was roped in to replace the injured Jofra Archer.
The pair comes in after Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes had pulled out of the UAE leg. The Royals had also called up Tabraiz Shamsi, the top-ranked T20I bowler currently, as a replacement for Andrew Tye, last week.
The Sanju Samson-led side is currently placed fifth in the points table, with three wins from seven games, and will resume their campaign against Punjab Kings on September 21, in Dubai.