2020 IPL: What Teams Look Like Ahead of IPL Auction on 19 Dec

The last hour of the trade window saw all 8 sides sending out a list of players they had released for next season.

Updated13 Dec 2019, 11:33 AM IST
Cricket
8 min read

The preparations for IPL 2020 have begun in full swing, with franchises getting an opportunity to trade players within themselves and release cricketers before the auction that will be held in Kolkata next month. In one of the most active IPL transfer windows ever seen, several big names switched sides, notably Ravichandran Ashwin who moved from Kings XI Punjab and Ajinkya Rahane, who was traded from Rajasthan. Both Indian Test players will turn out for Delhi Capitals in IPL 2020.

2020 IPL: What Teams Look Like Ahead of IPL Auction on 19 Dec

The last hour of the trade window saw considerable movement as well, with all eight sides sending out a list of the players that they had released for next season. The flurry of activity and announcements throws up a number of spots that will need to be filled before the next season gets underway.

We look at how the teams stack up ahead of next month’s auctions, and the players they can target to fill in the gaps come December 19.

Rajasthan Royals

Players released: One of the most active teams in the trade window, the Royals made headlines when they decided to part with Rahane, who will now turn out for Delhi in the next edition of the tournament. They also let go of Dhawal Kulkarni to Mumbai Indians and Krishnappa Gowthan to Punjab. In turn, Ankit Rajpoot was traded from the Mohali side to Rajasthan. Rahul Tewatia too will be a fresh face who will turn out for the franchise next year. Rahul Tripathi, Aryaman Birla, Liam Livingstone, Prashant Chopra, Stuart Binny, Sudhean Midhun, Shubham Ranjane, Ashton Turner, Jaydev Unadkat, Ish Sodhi and Oshane Thomas have been released.

How Rajasthan shape up ahead of the auctions: Rajasthan Royals had yet another dismal showing in 2019, as they finished second last on the points table. The one area of concern was their inability to field a balanced XI that could win games consistently. The top-order lacked a power-hitter with both Rahane and Steven Smith needing a few overs to get going. Despite the presence of Sanju Samson, it was a case of surviving the first few overs rather than going for the big hits, which is what upset Rajasthan’s momentum in many games. Rahane was replaced mid-season by Smith as captain of the side, and they will now be looking for a more aggressive Indian player for the top in the auctions.

The batting line-up thinned down drastically once the foreign exports left the IPL to train for the World Cup this year. Sans Riyan Parag and Shreyas Gopal, no Indian effectively stood up for the team, with the exorbitant Jaydev Unadkat failing to impress once again. Going ahead, Rajasthan will look to spend smartly to bring together a core group of Indian youngsters who can take the side forward in the years to come.

Sunrisers Hyderabad

Players released: The Sunrisers Hyderabad side did not trade any player but released five players, including two foreigners. They let go of Deepak Hooda, Martin Guptill, Ricky Bhui, Shakib Al Hasan and Yusuf Pathan, and will be looking to pick an Indian all-rounder who can consistently win games in the auctions.

How SRH shape up: The SRH unit were led fantastically by their opening duo of David Warner and Jonny Bairstow, which is a major reason why the side decided to part ways with Guptill, who, despite being a fiery opener, would hardly have received chances at the top. Kane Williamson was out injured for most parts of IPL 2019, but he lends a sense of solidity to the madness.

The franchise was let down by their Indians this season, with Hooda, Pathan, Vijay Shankar and Manish Pandey remaining inconsistent. The first two players have been released, along with all-rounder Shakib, who has been banned by the ICC for a period of two years. They have one of the best bowling attacks in the competition, and will just look to increase the strength of the middle order by picking a few reliable Indians for the death.

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Players released: Unsurprisingly, the RCB side have released the maximum number of players ahead of IPL 2020. They were well below-par in 2019, ending up last in the points table and even lost seven games in a row to get their campaign off to a dismal start. They have released all their foreign players expect Moeen Ali and AB de Villiers, and have also let go of Akshdeep Nath, Himmat Singh, Kulwant Khejroliya, Milind Kumar and Prayas Barman.

How RCB shape up: Despite two of the best batsmen in the world in their ranks, RCB have, season-after-season, disappointed with their lack of planning and focus on bowlers. They constantly shuffle the playing XI, fail to identify their core group at the start and apply a revolving door policy that ends up jumbling up their plans further. A case in point being holding back Shimron Hetmyer and giving him just five games in 2019 despite the serious skills that he possesses.

The RCB team have - and there is no other way to say this - the worst bowling team in the competition for a while now, and the team management should show equal focus on picking match-winners with the ball as well. A bunch of fresh faces with no past baggage seems to be RCB’s policy for 2020, which might not be the worst move.

Delhi Capitals

Players released: After a long time, Delhi had something to cheer about as they reached the play-offs and impressed one and all with their skills on offer. To improve on their 2019 performance, they went all out in the trade window, bagging two premier players in Ashwin and Rahane. They traded J Suchith to Punjab for Ashwin, Sherfane Rutherford to Mumbai, along with sending Markande (they had earlier traded Markande from Mumbai) and Tewatia to Rajasthan. The players released include Hanuma Vihari, Mathu Singh, Manjot Kalra, Jalaj Saxena, Bandaru Ayyapa, Ankush Bains and foreign recruits Colin Ingram, Colin Munro and Chris Morris.

Players released: After a long time, Delhi had something to cheer about as they reached the play-offs and impressed one and all with their skills on offer. To improve on their 2019 performance, they went all out in the trade window, bagging two premier players in Ashwin and Rahane. They traded J Suchith to Punjab for Ashwin, Sherfane Rutherford to Mumbai, along with sending Markande (they had earlier traded Markande from Mumbai) and Tewatia to Rajasthan. The players released include Hanuma Vihari, Mathu Singh, Manjot Kalra, Jalaj Saxena, Bandaru Ayyapa, Ankush Bains and foreign recruits Colin Ingram, Colin Munro and Chris Morris.

Chennai Super Kings

Players released: The highly successful franchise had yet another season to remember in 2019 as they reached the finals but lost the title by just a whisker. They had a lot working for them, right from the slow tracks at the Chepauk that aided their plethora of slow bowlers to the roll-back-the-clock batting by skipper MS Dhoni. They chose to release six players - Scott Kuggeleijn, Sam Billings, Mohit Sharma, Dhruv Shorey, Davd Willey and Chaitanya Bishnoi ahead of the auctions.

How CSK shape up: The side has relied on experienced players over the age of 30 in the last two years, and while that has been their X-factor, there will be a time when fitness issues will catch up on the likes of Shane Watson, MS Dhoni, Dwayne Bravo and Imran Tahir (who is over 40). While there is no denying their potential, the likes of Suresh Raina and Kedar Jadhav had underwhelming seasons this year, and it would not be a bad move to include a number of fresh legs who can add a bit of zeal to the experience.

Kings XI Punjab

Players released: One of the most active franchises in the trade window, Punjab got hands on J Sucith and Krishnappa Gowtham for 2020 but had to part with their skipper Ashwin and Rajpoot. They also released Andrew Tye, David Miller, Moises Henriques, Sam Curran, Varun Chakravarthy, Prabhsimran Singh and Agnivesh Ayachi, and will look to improve their sixth place finish in 2020 under a new skipper, presumably KL Rahul.

How the team shapes up: Despite getting off to winning starts in the first half of the IPL in the last two years, the Punjab team floundered at the end and was unable to make the top four. In Rahul and Chris Gayle, KXIP had one of the most dangerous opening pairs, but, like Rajasthan, the batting potential dwindled as one moved down the order. The side was undone by the continued inconsistency of Miller, and a freak injury to Moises Henriques at the start of the season meant that the team was lacking an all-rounder, who is so vital in a T20 game. Andrew Tye was below-par too, and the top priorities for Punjab in the auctions will be to get hold of a foreign pacer, a couple of big-hitters along with a few all-rounders.

Mumbai Indians

Players released: The defending champions further strengthened their squad by adding Trent Boult, Dhawal Kulkarni and Sherfane Rutherford to their side. While they let go of Siddhesh Lad to Kolkata Knight Riders, they released Yuvraj Singh, Adam Milne, Alzarri Joseph, Barinder Sran, Ben Cutting, Beuran Hendricks, Evin Lewis, Jason Behrendorff, Pankaj Jaswal and Rasikh Dar. The aforementioned players hardly got a game in the last season, and it came as no surprise that they were not retained.

How the team shapes up: The only team that has no visible flaws, Mumbai will just be looking to fill in players as they already have a settled squad in their arsenal. Their pace attack appears even more threatening after they procured the services of Boult and Kulkarni, and they will once again be the team to beat in 2020. In Rohit Sharma, they have one of the most astute skippers in the format, while Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav are two of the most talented players from India currently. Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya and Keiron Pollard make the lower order a dangerous one, while Jasprit Bumrah is the best bowler in the world. The only area that they can look to improve is their opening slot, and they might target an Indian opener in the auctions.

Kolkata Knight Riders

Players released: Much to the surprise of many, KKR decided to let go of Chris Lynn for IPL 2020. Whilst inconsistent on occasions, Lynn is a big-hitter at the top, and has been holding the position for a number of seasons now. Robin Uthappa is the other big player to have been released. The Karnataka cricketer played a frustrating knock in the Eliminator this year that led to KKR’s ouster, and his diminishing prowess was visible to all. Anrich Nortje, Carlos Brathwaite, Joe Denly, KC Cariappa, Matt Kelly, Nikhil Naik, Piyush Chawla, Prithviraj Yarra and Shrikant Mundhe were released as well.

How the team shapes up: KKR have a number of issues to sort before IPL 2020. They have released two top order players, and will be looking to pick a number three player, with Shubman Gill likely to open the innings in Lynn’s absence. They will also want a like-for-like replacement for Andre Russell, who is prone to injuries, with Brathwaite, who was expected to fulfil that role his year, having failed to impress. KKR also will hope to add a number of searing and accurate fast bowlers in their ranks - the side was let down by the duo of Lockie Ferguson and Harry Gurney this year as they could not take advantage of the seam friendly track at Edens, conceding runs by the dozen.

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Published: 15 Nov 2019, 09:44 PM IST
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