How much has Sam Billings’ IPL jaunt been worth it?

Sam Billings celebrates his 50 in the victory over Kolkata, but it was his only success with the bat

Sam Billings is the captain of Kent County Cricket Club who has yet to captain the club this season.

Thanks to his IPL commitment with the Chennai Super Kings, he remains in India since the franchise has finished second in the table and will reach Sunday’s final should they defeat Kane Williamson’s Sunrisers tomorrow.

Whether Billings features in the matches is another thing. His form in the tournament has been poor.

Except for a thumping 56 of 23 balls against Kolkata way back on April 10, Billings has done little with the bat.

He is 51st in the table of leading run scorers with 108 runs in 10 innings at an average of 13.50. Yesterday saw him beaten first ball by a peach of delivery from Kings XI’s Ankit Rajpoot.

Matt Henry has been superb with the ball

The leading run scorer is Rishabt Pant with 684 at an average of 52. Billings’ CSK captain MS Dhoni tops the averages with a nose over 89. That shows how far from the top the Kent captain is.

All that said, how much have Kent missed their skipper?

Well, when it comes to the County Championship, the answer is probably little. Three wins out of four and Kiwi bowler Matt Henry the man of the moment with the ball, Kent are second in Division 2.

But when it comes to the Royal London Cup, Kent have been woeful. A seven-wicket defeat against Sussex has been followed by a 70-run loss at Middlesex.

Billings’ presence in the side could certainly have produced different results, especially given his undoubted abilities in the shorter versions of the game.

Sure, this is a game of “what if?” But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t play it. After all, we want our teams to be as strong as they can be.

The reality is that Billings’ IPL jaunt has done little for him and nothing for Kent.


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