Dimi won’t rule out hitting IPL for six

James Vince. Picture: Sarah Standing (170455-8793)

Vince relishing ‘second chance’

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We’ve had six years of the Indian Premier League, Dimi Mascarenhas has played in five of them and he may yet be back for more.

Injury ruled him out of the 2011 t20 extravaganza but the Hampshire stalwart has represented Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab playing alongside and against some of the biggest cricketing names on the planet.

This year’s stint with Kings XI ended in the frustrated 35-year-old kicking his heels on the sidelines, unable to force his way into the side skippered by Adam Gilchrist and which boasted Azhar Mahmood, David Miller and Shaun Marsh in their ranks.

So after just one appearance, Mascarenhas decided to head back to Ageas Bowl to rejoin his Hampshire comrades.

But even though some may have been put off returning to the Indian showpiece, Mascarenhas has not ruled it out.

He said: ‘There are a lot of overseas players in each team and they can only pick four.

‘Of course, it would have been nice to get a few more games. I feel my IPL record with the ball is very good and I can still perform at that level.

‘So maybe next year? I don’t know at this stage.

‘It’s a whole new auction, so I will try to get through this season, stay fit and then see how the body is.

‘I’m in a position where I have been really lucky.

‘I’ve played in five of the six years of the IPL and that’s a lot more than a lot of people have. I’m lucky to have had that chance.

‘I’ve played in 13 games in the IPL and I’m very happy with the way I performed with the ball.

‘I didn’t get any runs and it would have been nice to do that.

‘But with the ball, I was really happy with the way I played.’

After a blaze of publicity for the competition and the issues surrounding the availability of English players during its early years, the IPL has not quite forced its way to the top of the cricketing agenda in this country.

But while some would argue the novelty has worn off in the UK, in India, it’s still growing.

Mascarenhas said: ‘It’s still huge over there.

‘The crowds are massive and you always have lots of fans at your hotel waiting to see the players.

‘It’s a totally different game. The novelty hasn’t worn off at all.

‘The Indians are so passionate about the game and they will never stop supporting any team.

‘It’s still growing. The batters and the bowlers are getting better all the time.

‘There are 38-ball hundreds being scored, Chris Gayle scored 175, so the game is still going forward.

‘People are improving all the time and it’s still an amazing tournament to be involved in.’