The West Indies master-blaster clobbered Kolkata Knight Riders for 51 off just 17 balls last week in what was his 100th IPL game, and the 28-year-old proved once more how destructive he can be in T20 cricket.
He has become one of the stars at the Cobras over the last two seasons, with his big-hitting and clever medium-pacers playing a huge role in winning the T20 Challenge title for Paul Adams’ team in the 2014/15 season.
In the final alone, he hit 43 not out off 23 balls, and then followed it up with 3/21 with the ball as the Cobras beat the Knights by 33 runs at Newlands. He was also the T20 player of the season in South Africa after scoring 243 runs and taking 14 wickets.
But he missed most of last season’s action with a knee injury, which saw him play in just four matches, and more importantly miss the closing stages of the season.
Pollard’s calm demeanour under pressure was missed in the semi-final against the Dolphins at Kingsmead as the Cobras went from cruising to victory at 132/2 to 173/8 to come up five runs short of the home side’s total.
But while Pollard was contracted for just the two seasons, the Cobras announced on their website on Tuesday that they are keen on recruiting the big man once more.
Cobras chief executive Nabeal Dien told Independent Media, though, that it is a matter of finance that will ultimately determine whether Pollard arrives at Newlands next season.
“We have an arrangement with Kieron Pollard to play for us next season, but a lot depends on finance,” Dien said. “You must remember that we played the whole of last season without a sponsor, which makes things very tough. It is a sign of the current climate.
“But he is keen to come back to us and we have spoken to him. Now it’s basically down to me to find the finance. We have made some strides in that regard, but still have some way to go to ensure that we can bring him to the Cobras once again.”
Pollard missed out on the West Indies’ thrilling World T20 triumph in India recently as he hadn’t quite got over the knee problem that ended his Cobras season prematurely.
But he is still regarded as one of the premier “finishers” in the shortest version of the game as he has the ability to clear the boundary at the end of the innings.
His cutters and changes of pace with the ball is an under-rated skill as well, and he has often taken crucial wickets for the Cobras.
“He’s made a massive impact whenever he’s been with us, and I am positive that we would’ve won the playoff this past season if he hadn’t been injured. That defeat still hurts a lot!” Dien said.
“Also his experience off the field has been invaluable to our youngsters coming through. He has said that he would only play for us in South Africa, so we hope that we can get him here.”
Original source: Cobras hope to sign Pollard again