This edition of the IPL has been an entertaining one to watch for cricket fans. However, a lot of established players haven’t been able to prove themselves in this season of the tournament. Some didn’t get enough opportunities, while others have just looked rusty even after being backed consistently by their teams.
IPL auctions play an extremely integral part of keeping the league more interesting. Mega Auctions are definitely the most engaging ones to watch, as franchises have to build their teams from scratch. The last mega auction was held before the 2018 edition of the IPL.
This season has been a treat to watch for fans of some teams, and a disappointment for a few others. If the mega auction happens before the 2021 season, a lot of franchises would be looking to set things straight. It shall be the perfect opportunity for sides to strengthen their weak areas.
Let’s go through the list of IPL players:
1. Royal Challengers Bangalore- Aaron Finch
Australian white-ball captain Aaron Finch has opened the batting for Royal Challengers Bangalore along with Karnataka youngster Devdutt Padikkal this season. The duo has given good starts that have laid the foundation for Kohli and ABD to take the game forward. However, Finch, as of the first 10 matches, has certainly not performed to the best of his abilities.
Finch has 221 runs to his name in 10 innings at a paltry strike-rate of 110.50. His solitary half-century came against Mumbai Indians, which was the only knock where he looked at his fluent best- scoring 40 off the 52 runs in the powerplay. He has looked like the only weak link in an otherwise in-form top four. He has struggled against both swing and spin at the top of the order.
Royal Challengers would certainly be looking to retain Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, and Yuzvendra Chahal- the core of the team. With many other players like Padikkal, Chris Morris, Washington Sundar, Isuru Udana, and Navdeep Saini having performed extremely well this season, the franchise would certainly be looking to RTM at least two of these players.
Even if Finch performs well in the upcoming games, RCB do not really require an opener that much. They can target an experienced middle-order batsman who shall provide stability and release the pressure of ABD. Kohli can then open with Devdutt at the top, his most successful batting position in IPL.
2. Kolkata Knight Riders- Pat Cummins
Aussie all-rounder Pat Cummins was the most expensive buy of the 2020 auction at INR 15.5 crores. He made his IPL debut in 2014 for KKR and also represented Delhi Capitals in the following seasons. A lot was expected from him, and he hasn’t exactly performed to his ‘price tag’, especially with the ball.
Cummins has taken six wickets in 11 matches at an economy rate of 7.82. While he has done well to control the flow of runs in the powerplay overs, he hasn’t picked up a lot of wickets. His best performance came against Delhi Capitals- 3/17 in four overs and taking the wickets of openers Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane. He has been handy with the bat, scoring 130 runs at a strike-rate of 136.84.
Kolkata have had a decent season with six wins to their name. Although there have been multiple hiccups on the way, they look like contenders for the fourth spot for the playoffs. They would definitely want to retain Eoin Morgan, Sunil Narine, and Andre Russell for the upcoming season. Besides the star players, Shubman Gill and at least one of the young Indian pacers will remain in demand for the Knight Riders.
3. Rajasthan Royals- David Miller
Proteas batsman David Miller was purchased for just INR 75 lakhs by Rajasthan Royals in the 2019 auction. However, with the foreign combination of Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Steve Smith, and Jofra Archer, he was never expected to be a regular in the playing XI.
Miller was unfortunate to get only a single game when Buttler was not available for the first fixture. He was run-out without facing a ball against Chennai Super Kings, and he didn’t get an opportunity ever since. Tom Curran was persisted with till Ben Stokes joined Rajasthan.
Rajasthan have not had a good season, winning just five of the first 12 games. Apart from captain Smith, Rajasthan would definitely retain star players Jofra Archer and Jos Buttler. Ben Stokes scored a century against Mumbai and he’s a match-winner, so Rajasthan would not want to release him as well.
4. Chennai Super Kings- Shane Watson
IPL veteran and Aussie all-rounder Shane Watson is playing his third season for the Chennai Super Kings. After two successful seasons in 2018 and 2019, Watson has not really had the best season this time around for the Men in Yellow.
Watson has scored 285 runs in 10 innings at an average of 31.66 and a strike-rate of 125. While these numbers might look good at face value, they have been inflated by two-three good knocks in the games CSK managed to win or lose by close margins.
Chennai have had the worst season ever in their history. With just four wins in 12 games, their playoff hopes are over. Dhoni hinted that the franchise has started to plan for next season. For that, they would have to take a lot of tough decisions like dropping world-class players who have aged.
5. Sunrisers Hyderabad- Mohammad Nabi
Afghan all-rounder Mohammad Nabi was purchased by the Sunrisers in 2017. Since then, he has represented them in only 14 games. He has 146 runs and 11 wickets to his name in the matches that he has played. He got his longest run in the 2019 edition when he played eight games.
Nabi played a solitary game this season, scoring 11 runs off eight balls and conceding just 23 runs in his quota of four overs against Kolkata Knight Riders. However, once NZ captain Kane Williamson was fit, Nabi went back to warming the bench. Nabi had a great season in the CPL, but could not get enough opportunities this season with the Sunrisers.
Even after Kane was out with a hamstring injury in the latter stages of the tournament, Sunrisers included Jason Holder in the playing XI. SRH would certainly retain David Warner, Jonny Bairstow and Rashid Khan ahead of the mega auction. Apart from these players, they would also look to try and get back Kane Williamson and Bhuvneshwar Kumar using the RTMs.
6. Mumbai Indians- Chris Lynn
Aussie explosive opener Chris Lynn was purchased by Mumbai at the base price of INR two crores ahead of the auction this season. He is yet to make his debut for the defending champions. Quinton de Kock and Rohit Sharma remain as the regular openers for MI this season as well.
In a champion side like Mumbai Indians, it is tough to get into the playing XI in the first go. Besides, they are one team that do not believe in chopping and changing their team much. It doesn’t look like they will try Lynn going forward in the tournament.
MI will look to persist with their Indian core of Rohit, Jasprit Bumrah, and Hardik Pandya. Besides them, Kieron Pollard and de Kock will also either be retained or RTMed. Therefore, it looks likely that MI would release Lynn. A team like CSK, who would be looking for a squad overhaul after this season, could be tempted to go for him as a replacement for Shane Watson.
7. Delhi Capitals- Shimron Hetmyer
Caribbean batsman Shimron Hetmyer was released by RCB ahead of the auction. Delhi Capitals purchased him for INR 7.75 crores. He was expected to solve the middle-order conundrum for Delhi, but he hasn’t had that much of an impact in the limited opportunities he got to bat.
Hetmyer has 111 runs to his name in seven innings at an average of 25.25 and a strike-rate of 154.16. His best performance came against Kings XI in Sharjah, where scored a rapid 45 off just 24 deliveries. Apart from that, he hasn’t set the stage on fire in the opportunities he got.
Delhi would aim to retain captain Shreyas Iyer, star-pacer Kagiso Rabada and wicket-keeper Rishabh Pant. These three have been the core of the franchise for the past three seasons. Anrich Nortje and Shikhar Dhawan have been among the two-star performers this season with the ball and bat respectively, and DC will definitely try to RTM him.
8. Kings XI Punjab- Glenn Maxwell
Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell has been one of the most disappointing players of this edition of the IPL. Coming off the back of a ‘Man of the Series’ show in the ODI series against England just before the IPL, everyone had a lot of expectations from him. However, he has failed to put up even a single decent performance with the bat in the first 11 games.
Maxwell has only mustered 102 runs in 10 innings at a strike-rate of just 102. With the ball, his performance has been relatively better- two wickets in 19 overs at an economy rate of 7.79. These numbers do not do justice to the talent that we all know Maxwell possesses.
Kings XI would certainly be looking to retain their openers, KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal. Nicholas Pooran is also one special talent they would not want to release ahead of the auction. Mohammed Shami has been their strike bowler, so KXIP will RTM or retain him depending upon the situation.
Source: The source of this content is our cricket news platform Crictracker.
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