IPL 2018 Auction: 5 players who could go for big money at the auction
Even though India is playing in South Africa at the moment, fans are focused on January 27 and 28, the IPL Auction! The two-time IPL champions Chennai Super Kings and 2008 winners Rajasthan Royals are making a comeback into the league after serving their respective two-year suspensions.
Before the auction, teams were allowed to retain a maximum of 5 players through a combination of player retention and Right To Match Cards (RTMs).
Mumbai, CSK, Royal Challengers and Delhi Daredevils have retained 3 players, Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders have opted for 2, while RR and the Kings XI Punjab have gone for one each. Over the years we have seen many lesser-known players make the headlines by fetching exorbitantly high amounts at the auction. Here are 5 cricketers who could leave us jaw-dropped and flabbergasted on the day of auction:
5) Krunal Pandya
The senior Pandya was one of the brightest prospects that IPL 2016 gave fans. Krunal belongs to the rare species of versatile, invaluable all-rounders who are equally effective with both bat and ball. Coming in at 3, he can smash big sixes and slip in 4 cheap overs in the middle section of the bowling.
These qualities make him an indispensable asset to any IPL side. He is up for grabs at the auction, and his price could well rise sky-high. However, Mumbai Indians are likely to use RTM on him even if it shrinks their purse a little.
4) Rashid Khan
The Afghan teen has been setting every T20 league that he is playing in, on fire. He followed his phenomenal IPL season with a hat-trick in the Caribbean Premier League. Thereafter, he has been mighty impressive for Adelaide Strikers in their BBL campaign. Using the googly as his trump card, Rashid has bamboozled the best batsmen in the business.
He is unlikely to disappoint a huge bidder at IPL 2018, but likely to be kept by Sunrisers with their RTM option.
3) Evin Lewis
The southpaw from Trinidad has been simply sensational in T20Is in the past 12-15 months. The destruction he has caused at the top of the order for West Indies has been immense. With a strike rate of 155 in T20IS, he can make a mockery of any big target. After his two T20I centuries against the Men in Blue, the Indians know how much he can hurt when he gets going.
Surely he is on some franchise’s plans going forward. Don’t be surprised if he sets the auction on fire, just like Ben Stokes did last time.
2) Colin Munro
The Durban-born left hander who represents the Black Caps became the first batsman to score 3 T20I hundreds after a 53-ball 104 against Windies. Munro has ensured that New Zealand hasn’t missed Brendon McCullum.
On his day, he can tear apart any bowling attack at will. Having been in the ranks of the Mumbai Indians and KKR in the past, he has the experience of playing in IPL. One more asset that Munro possesses is his ability to slip in a couple of overs with his medium pace in case a frontline seamer is having an off day.
With all this going for him, he could grab eyeballs from spendthrifts at the auction.
1) Chris Lynn
The 27-year-old Queenslander has been red-hot as always in the BBL for Brisbane Heat, forming a great partnership with Brendon McCullum. Together the duo are called the ‘Big Bash Brothers’.
Lynn was devastating in the few matches he played for KKR last season. With the kind of hitting power he possesses, the chances of him ruling the auction are quite high. Since KKR are done with their two foreign retentions, they won’t be able to exercise the RTM card on Lynn.