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Indian Premier League 2022

IPL 2022: Five surprising omissions from the retained list ahead of the mega auction

IPL 2022 retained
Aadya Sharma by Aadya Sharma
@Aadya_Wisden 3 minute read

The eight existing Indian Premier League franchises announced their list of retained players for IPL 2022 – here’s a look at some of the biggest names that did not make it to the final retention list.

With a mega auction planned in a few months’ time, the teams each made their retention list public (if you missed it, here’s a recap), cutting into their INR 90 crore quota to hold onto select players. At the end of the exercise, a few prominent names missed out, some of whom decided to drop out themselves in the hope of fetching a higher amount (or looking for a new home) at the auction.

Here are five players who, surprisingly, did not get retained:

KL Rahul

IPL record: 94 matches, 3,273 runs @ 47.43, SR: 136.38

KL Rahul is a monster in the IPL, there are no two ways about it. His approach early in the innings might raise questions at times, but the sheer volume of runs flowing off his bat (he’s scored a staggering 77 per cent of his IPL runs in the last four seasons) has been immense. Rahul doubles up as a wicketkeeper too, and is known to be a smart reader of the game. In a Punjab franchise with dwindling stocks, he was a sure-shot retention, but he ended up being one of the big omissions from the final retention list.

On retention day, it emerged that he was looking for greener pastures, and asked not to be retained. In that case, there isn’t much Punjab can do, but they’ll surely feel the sting the next time they get out on the field, bereft of their run-machine at the top.

A captain-less RCB wouldn’t mind it though – will it turn out to be the perfect homecoming for the Bangalore boy?

Rashid Khan

IPL record: 76 matches, 93 wickets @ 20.56, ER: 6.33

Another massive omission, Rashid Khan is the bowler who had been holding Sunrisers Hyderabad’s line-up together. If his reputation and skill-set aren’t enough, his numbers have been truly spectacular too – among the top-20 IPL wicket-takers of all time, Rashid has the best average and economy rate.

Beyond his strangulating four-over quota, Rashid is also a fiery lower-order batter, something that’s been valuable to a fragile SRH batting group over the years. SRH made it clear that it was a question of money, and Rashid stepped away to eye a bigger amount in the auction. Any which way, it’ll be a new beginning for both parties.

Ishan Kishan

IPL record: 61 matches, 1,452 runs @ 28.47, SR: 136.34

If you’re looking towards the future, you wouldn’t want to let go of a rising star that easy. Kishan was on a roll towards the end of the 2021 season, even breaking into the India squad for the T20 World Cup. All in all, it was a breakthrough year (India debut included), but Mumbai Indians decided to not have him as one of the four retained.

It could be any one of a couple of factors (or even a combination) – they might be eyeing him at a cheaper price in the auction, but given the amount they’ve spent on their retentions already, affording an in-demand Kishan won’t be easy. Another plausible explanation could be that Kishan doesn’t fit in their future plans – his blistering batting style always comes with a bit of spotlight on his inconsistency, and Mumbai could be looking elsewhere to fill that spot in their roster. Given that Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah and Kieron Pollard were fairly obvious picks, it could have turned out to be a face-off between Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav, with MI preferring the stability of the latter.

Hardik Pandya

IPL record: 92 matches, 1,476 runs @ 27.33, SR: 153.91; 42 wickets @ 31.26, ER: 9.07

Ever since he made his debut for them half a decade ago, Hardik Pandya has been a sparkling presence in Mumbai Indians’ juggernaut, acting as the bridge between the veterans in the team and the newer players. A batting strike-rate of 153, combined with the overs he can bowl in the middle period, and the breeziness he brings on the field, make him an attractive all-round package, but, with only four slots available, it proved to be a difficult ask including him. Also, his bowling output has gone down dramatically, and while there’s hope he’ll become again the all-rounder he once was, banking on him to do so was a risk not worth taking for MI.

Yuzvendra Chahal

IPL record: 114 matches, 139 wickets @ 22.28, ER: 7.59

Not too long ago, Chahal was Virat Kohli’s go-to man, a trusted matchwinner who would magically break his way through partnerships without conceding too many. The only bowler to take over 100 wickets for Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chahal was one of the first names on the team sheet until last season and was their leading wicket-taker in 2021 as well. With the IPL likely to return to India, his canny bowling would have been invaluable at the Chinnaswamy stadium. It’s unclear if it’s RCB’s decision or his, but it also gives the franchise a fresh chance to build their bowling attack from the ground up.

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