Usually, the season after a mega-auction, franchises do not take the call of releasing established cricketers. However, the perspectives of the format have changed and hence, it won’t be a surprise if big names are let go by the teams. Similarly, in IPL 2022, as well, there were some well-known cricketers who failed to set the stage on fire. In fact, they were disappointing and might be released by their respective units. In this article, we take a look at the list of four popular players who might be released to IPL 2023 Auctions.
1) Ajinkya Rahane (Kolkata Knight Riders)
Matches: 7 || Runs: 133 || Average: 19 || Strike Rate: 103
Ajinkya Rahane was hired at his base price by KKR at IPL 2022 Mega-Auctions. Since Alex Hales had pulled out, KKR was left with few choices. Hence, Rahane got a few games at the top of the order for the two-time champions.
In the past, Rahane was known for his ability to make maximum use of the powerplay restrictions. However, the veteran failed in this aspect in IPL 2022. His strike rate was low and the run accumulation was also poor. KKR might be better off using a young cricketer in the role. Hence, the Mumbai player could be released before next season.
2) Pat Cummins (Kolkata Knight Riders)
Matches: 5 || Wickets: 7 || Average: 30 || Economy: 10.6
Pat Cummins is one of the popular players who might be released to IPL 2023 Auctions. KKR shelled out INR 7.25 Cr for Australia’s Test skipper at IPL 2022 Mega-Auctions. It was a surprising move because Pat’s economy in the T20s, especially in IPL, has always been on the higher side.
Although he did help KKR win a game with the bat, Cummins failed to do a good job in his primary skill. This might force KKR to release the cricketer, more so because they can add INR 7.25 Cr to the purse for IPL 2023 Auctions. With the 50-over World Cup scheduled in 2023, it anyways might not be a surprise if Cummins pulls out of the next edition.
3) Kane Williamson (Sunrisers Hyderabad)
Matches: 13 || Runs: 216 || Average: 19 || Strike Rate: 93
Kane Williamson was in a forgettable touch in IPL 2022. He hardly contributed with the bat and as a captain, too, Kane was not able to pull off wins from unlikely situations.
The core of the SRH batting line-up, comprising Rahul Tripathi, Aiden Markram, Nicholas Pooran, and Abhishek Sharma, actually looks exciting. While a player of Kane’s mould is needed, spending INR 14 Cr on it might not be required. Hence, SRH could look to release the Kiwi and buy him back. If not, they can target other options like Dawid Malan or Steve Smith. As for the captaincy, Pooran is available apart from Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has led the team before.
4) Kieron Pollard (Mumbai Indians)
Matches: 11 || Runs: 144 || Average: 14.4 || Strike Rate: 107
Kieron Pollard is also one of the popular players who might be released to IPL 2023 Auctions. The West Indian was one of the retained players by Mumbai Indians before IPL 2022 Mega-Auctions. However, the experienced all-rounder did not arrive in good form at the event. With the ball, there were anyways little expectations but Pollard was supposed to finish games for MI consistently.
While the player has not done that, there has also been the emergence of Tim David on the other hand. Pollard’s salary is INR 6 Cr and considering MI will want to make a few statement signings, they might have to sacrifice the cricketer. For Pollard, as well, a stint at a different outfit might help in rediscovering the old touch.