Cricket News By TODAYLIVESCORE.INFO - Behind the non-retention of Rashid Khan and KL Rahul. Rashid Khan is now in the free pool for the two new franchises to pick from
Rashid Khan is now in the free pool for the two new franchises to pick from
That Sunrisers Hyderabad couldn't retain Rashid Khan and Punjab Kings couldn't retain KL Rahul were two of the major talking points coming out of Tuesday evening. Both non-retentions, first reported by Cricbuzz, have much more to them than what meets the eye.
Having to release Rashid Khan, one of the leading bowlers in T20 format, was indeed a difficult negotiation. As one franchise insider said, letting go of Rahid is akin to Royal Challengers Bangalore releasing Virat Kohli, or Mumbai Indians releasing Rohit Sharma. However, it didn't seem this straightforward when agents from both parties were involved in an intense back and forth.
As previously reported, the SRH team, which had first bought Rashid in 2017 auction for Rs 4 crore and then used the Right To Match (RTM) card in the 2018 mega auction, wanted to keep the spinner as their No 2 retention. It would have meant that Rashid would be entitled to a fee of Rs 11 crore, which is Rs 2 crore more than his current salary.
After initially refusing to be the second retention, Rashid apparently relented but later reneged. SRH say they still have a good equation with the player but not as much with a London-based agent who was playing hardball with the franchise.
The franchise might not have heard back from Rashid after that but they still hope to buy him in the auction – that is, if one of the two new teams, Ahmedabad and Lucknow, don't rope him in first.
KL Rahul and Punjab Kings
PBKS, in turn, failed to hold on to KL Rahul, whom they had appointed captain keeping long-term goals in mind. The franchise co-owner Ness Wadia did not hide his disappointment. “He was our captain, we tried our best (to retain Rahul). We wanted him to stay but he wanted to go into the auction. He had different plans,” Wadia told Cricbuzz on Tuesday night (November 30). Rahul is understood to be headed for Lucknow.
“We have retained Mayank and Arshdeep who were part of our strategy. In terms of bowling, we are confident Arshdeep will represent India soon. It is too early to say if Mayank will be captain but he is a talented and committed player.
“Our first step was the retention and we will decide what is best for the franchise in terms of captaincy,” Wadia said adding, “Punjab Kings have not done as well as it should have done. We have plans for the next season to ensure better performance. Whatever we need to do we will do to improve and we are looking forward to having a right balance for the side.”
Elsewhere, it was a surprise that Royal Challengers Bangalore left out Yuzvendra Chahal, one of the most consistent performers for the franchise over the years. It is learnt that Chahal may not have agreed to be the No 3 retention, which would have entitled him to only Rs 7 crore. A bigger amount at the auction table is surely a possibility.
One of the most expected retentions was of Venkatesh Iyer by Kolkata Knight Riders who, in a span of two months, became an elite player from a virtual also-ran. Team CEO Venky Mysore explained the logic of the decisions. “Firstly, we are very proud of how the KKR squad has performed and particularly the way in which Team KKR made a comeback in the 2021 season. After agonising a lot, the think tank of KKR has decided to retain the following players — Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Varun Chakravarthy & Venkatesh Iyer. They bring unique skills & each of them is a match winner in his own right. We are hopeful that we can build a very competitive squad around this core group we have retained. Finally, a big thank you to the entire squad and the amazing players we couldn't retain and are hopeful that we can bring as many of our players back to the KKR squad,” Mysore said.
Finally, the absence of Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer from the Rajasthan Royals' list. Kumar Sangakkara strove to explain a part of it, saying Archer's fitness was an issue. “We would have ideally liked to have gone with four players but the uncertainty surrounding Jofra's long-term injury forced us to retain only three,” the team's director of cricket said.