Australia batsman George Bailey has been roped in by the Rising Pune Supergiants for the remainder of IPL 2016 as a replacement for the injured Faf du Plessis. Among the eight IPL sides this season, the MS Dhoni-led team have faced the biggest problems in terms of injuries.
After losing Kevin Pietersen, the Pune Supergiants lost Du Plessis, Mitchell Marsh and Steve Smith, landing a massive blow for the newcomers. Bailey, who was the former captain of Kings XI Punjab, was unsold at the IPL Player Auction 2016. He had a base price of Rs 1 crore (USD 148,000).
The 33-year-old started his IPL career with the Chennai Super Kings in 2009, where he played under MS Dhoni and Stephen Fleming, who are also a part of the Rising Pune Supergiants setup.
The IPL franchise are slowly starting to rope in replacements for the injured players. While Usman Khawaja was the official replacement for Pietersen, Bailey will now take the place of Du Plessis. The Sanjeev Goenka-owned franchise still have to find replacements for Mitchell Marsh and Steve Smith.
"Smith's [news] been a bummer. He was just coming into his own and this happened," Raghu Iyer, CEO, Rising Pune Supergiants, was quoted as saying by ESPN Cricinfo. "It is a challenging time. Before we could settle down we lost the core group of players around whom you build a team around.
"We lost four crucial players, but we are looking ahead. Bailey has tremendous experience and had a very successful season before last. He can contribute to the leadership group."