The franchisee leagues have assumed greater importance in recent months in view of the next T20I World cup in 11 months time and the biggest league in the World, the IPL is once again bracing up for its upcoming edition . The various IPL franchisees with a view to spruce up their teams have released many of their players of last few seasons which included some of their veteran stars. With the auction date slated for 19th December 2019, the respective teams after their player tradings till 14th November, are now in a good position to list out their requirements to fill up their seemingly vacant spots. We glance through the respective team compositions and their possible requirements as under .
Mumbai Indians : As expected the reigning champions have retained their core squad after closure of trading window. They have released 10 players including inconsistent Evin Lewis, injury prone Berendorff, Ben Cutting, Alzarri Joseph and retired Yuvraj Singh. Their core group of Rohit Sharma, Pandya brothers, Bumrah, SuryaYadav, Malinga, Mcclenaghan, Dcock, Ishan Kishen and Pollard are all in tact and they have pouched Trent Boult and Sherfane Rutherford ,both from Delhi Capitals in the trading window and thus almost have all the bases covered. Hence Mumbai may look to recruit one more good spinner apart from Rahul Chahar, maybe one more middle order batter and some good Indian talent. They have 13 crs in their purse as they go shopping on auction day .
Chennai Super Kings : Like Mumbai , CSK retained their aged faithfuls who may keep playing together for eternity. The Dad’s army continue to boast Dhoni, Watson, Raina, Bravo, Harbhajan, Imran Tahir, Duplessis, Rayudu, Kedar Jadav along with more younger Jadeja, Deepak Chahar, Ngidi etc. Releasing just six players including Sam Billings and David Willey . However Willey’s release is a bit surprising as the Chennai pitch could have suited his bowling style . With 14 crs in purse , CSK may look for a good overseas fast bowler.
Delhi Capitals : Have to admit , Delhi have caused some surprises . Inspite of a strong Indian presence in batting, they have taken Ajinkha Rahane from Rajasthan Royals ,who is not a T20 hot property and being a senior player , cannot be kept sitting in the reserves for too long and Delhi already boast Shaw, Dhawan, Shreyas and Pant as top four. Maybe Prithvi’s recent fortunes may have pushed the Delhi management to go for Rahane. Another surprise is taking Ravi Ashwin from Punjab with Amit Mishra, Lamichhane and Axar Patel already in their ranks.Delhi sprung a 3rd big surprise by trading Trent Boult to Mumbai and releasing Chris Morris ,which means only Rabada remains their overseas strike bowler. They have also released Colin Munro and Colin Ingram. With 28 crs in their purse ,they possibly may buy back Morris at a lower price from Auction and may look at another overseas fast bowler.
Kings XI Punjab : Punjab took bold steps in releasing the underperforming David Miller since last 2 seasons and also releasing currently off colour Andrew Tye as well as Henriques. However their release of Sam Curran is a bit of surprise,as he has been currently doing well . Varun Chakravorty, their supposed to be mystery spinner is also shown exit door after his crazy 8 cr buy last season. Retaining most of their core players in KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Karun Nair, Shami, Mujeeb, Gayle etc , they have a good recruit in K Gowtham, traded from Rajasthan Royals who is in sparkling touch this season. Another big news is release of last two seasons skipper Ravi Ashwin to Delhi Capitals. With 43 crs purse ,Priety Zinta’s team is all set for a big shopping spree at the auction ,where they will surely go for a couple of top Aussie fast bowlers, a solid batsman and a spinner. With Kumble at the helm , the bowling arsenal of Kings XI will undergo a radical change.
Rajasthan Royals: With Steve Smith declared as captain , Rajasthan have held on to their very strong core of overseas players in 2019 World cup winners Stokes, Buttler and Archer , the trio which won England that spine chilling World cup final.They have reiterated their faith in Samson, promising Riyan Parag, Shreyas Gopal ,Varun Aaron and have recruited promising pacer Ankit Rajpoot (from Punjab),and spinners Markande and Tewatia (both Delhi). Amongst their releases ,the biggest names are Ajinkha Rahane (absorbed by Delhi after playing 100 plus games for Rajasthan ) and a recent struggling Jaydev Unadkat who couldn’t justify his sensational pay packet of last two seasons. Maybe Royals might re purchase Unadkat at a lesser price from auction. Also released amongst other are Ashton Turner , Rahul Tripathy, Ish Sodhi and Stuart Binny while Gowtham is traded with Punjab . With 29 crs in their kitty ,Rajasthan can look forward to strengthening their reserve bench and get a good opener at the top of the order.
Sunrisers Hyderabad : The strong core retained .They have released only 5 players – Guptill, Yusuf Pathan and Deepak Hooda amongst them with all three not performing upto expectations last couple of season . Also Shakib Al Hassan was a forced release this year. With a settled team and just 17 crores avaliable, they have kept their faith in youngsters and may look for a batting allrounder in the middle order.
Kolkata Knight Riders : KKR is clearly stressing more on current form and therefore has released 3 of their old guards in Uthappa, Pijush Chawla and an injury prone Chris Lynn. While Lynn might be gobbled up by another franchisee, the other two look uncertain to get a team on current form. In addition KKR has flushed out some of their excess baggage and kept their faith on skipper Dinesh Karthik, Andre Russell and long serving Sunil Narine along with their long list of young guns including Kuldeep, Gill, Rana, Fergusion and their fit again future stars Mavi and Nagarkote. With 11 slots available to fill and 35 crs in their purse , KKR will surely look for a good overseas batsman (probably an opener) , a reputed overseas fast bowler and some strong backups including a good backup spinner. They have already traded the promising batter Siddheswar Lad from Mumbai .
Royal Challengers Bangaluru: With no trophy to show in 12 editions, the RCB thinktank has gone for broke and released 12 players (7 foreigners) thus removing all inconsistent performers in Stoinis, Heytmer, DGrandhome, Klasein, Southee and injury prone Dale Steyn and Coulter Nile. With Kohli, Dvilliers, Chahal, Saini ,Umesh, Parthiv Patel, Sundar, and Moeen forming the core RCB with 12 possible recruitments and 28 crores to use ,RCB will be looking for an opener , an allrounder and a World class overseas fast bowler and some decent reserves .
With CPL recently played , BBL approaching and T20I bilateral series being played accross the globe, one would imagine many exciting talents to be a part in forthcoming IPL auction . Expect players like Aaron Finch, Jhye Richardson, Mitchel Starc, Pattinson, Cummins, Morgan, Dawid Malan, Ashton Agar, Kusal Parera, Alex Carey, Joe Root , Jonathan Carter, Hayden Walsh,Tim Bunton, Chris Jordan,Tim Seifert, Brendon King , Ben McDermott and many others.
The auction of 19th December 2019 will finalise the team compostions.