Ahead of the player auctions on February 11, let us look at all players that are likely to be released by the IPL teams in the coming weeks.
The preparations for the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League are well underway after the governing body announced deadlines for teams to give the list of retained players. Moreover, teams can do business amongst themselves as the trade window is set to be open until February 4.
Considering there will be no changes to the purses of teams for the upcoming auctions, teams will have to make some tough but key decisions to build a squad for the next campaign. The released players could either be traded or they will go straight back in the auction. Ahead of crucial few weeks for squad planning of various franchises, let us look at possible departures from every team.
The defending champions already have a well-rounded squad, but there is always a scope for improvement. Mumbai Indians currently have Rs 1.95 crores in their purse, so they may part ways with Nathan Coulter Nile to have more room for spending. The Australian bowler was bought for Rs 8 crores last year, but he featured very late in the tournament. Chriss Lynn is another player that could be released since he did not feature for the team last season.
Chennai Super Kings
Chennai Super Kings endured their worst campaign in IPL history last year. They are expected to make numerous changes to the squad after finishing last in the league table. Since CSK currently has only 15 lakhs in the purse, they will have to release numerous players to start rebuilding the squad.
Kedar Jadhav and Piyush Chawla are reportedly already on the list of released players. Shane Watson has announced retirement, while Murali Vijay could also be released to make space for new openers in the squad. The future of Harbhajan Singh also looks uncertain after he missed the last IPL campaign due to personal reasons. Imran Tahir and Josh Hazelwood could also find themselves back in the auction after getting very less playing time last season.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Kolkata Knight Riders had a turbulent campaign last year, which saw them changing captains midway through the season. KKR currently has 8.5 crores in the purse to spend in the auction. They will be looking to revamp the squad by releasing a few senior players. Since Dinesh Karthik is no longer captain and his performances have deteriorated, it will not be a surprise if he is released. Pat Cummins was the most expensive player in the last auction, but he failed to live up to the billing. The Australian pacer is also likely to be released. Kuldeep Yadav might also go straight into the auction this year after struggling to play regularly for KKR in the last two seasons.
Rajasthan Royals peaked late in the tournament last year, but it was not enough for them to get over the line. There are unlikely to be major changes to the squad in terms of the retention list. They currently have a big purse strength in the auction worth Rs 14.75 crores. Robin Uthappa and Jaydev Unadkat could be the only expensive players that could find themselves in the auction once again after poor performances last season. They will be looking to pick up smart buys like they always manage to do every auction.
Sunrisers Hyderabad made it to the playoffs last season, but they fell short in the second qualifier. They need a strong Indian middle-order batsman. With a purse of Rs 10.1 crores, they will be looking to improve the options in the batting department. In terms of high-profile departures, only Mitch Marsh could be released this month.
Delhi Capitals made big strides towards becoming a top team in IPL last season by reaching the final of the competition. They came up against a much superior Mumbai team, but Delhi’s squad is nicely taking shape to deliver the title sooner rather than later. Delhi currently has Rs 9 crores in the purse to bolster their squad. In terms of released players, Delhi could terminate the contract of Chris Woakes after finding a quality replacement in Anrich Nortje. Jason Roy could also be released as Delhi will be looking to explore an explosive Indian and foreign batting option during the auction along with a good deputy for Amit Mishra.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Royal Challengers Bangalore once again failed to make it to the final of IPL last year. The performances did improve for them, but they didn’t have enough to get past the first qualifier. For the upcoming auction, RCB has Rs 6.4 crores in the purse. They will be looking to add more strength to the middle order to be less dependent on Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers. In terms of releasing players, RCB could terminate contracts with Moeen Ali (sporadic performances) and Kane Richardson this year to add more money to the purse. Parthiv Patel also vacant one place in the squad since he has announced retirement from cricket.
Kings XI Punjab
Kings XI Punjab’s comeback in the last edition of IPL was commendable but it was too late for them to make the playoffs. There are still clearcut weaknesses in the squad that needs fixing. To enhance the squad in the auction, KXIP has the biggest purse strength amongst teams worth Rs 16.50 crores. Sheldon Cottrell had a disappointing IPL campaign, so he could be released, while underperforming batsmen Glenn Maxwell and Karun Nair could also make way for new arrivals.