The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) didn't have much money to work with at the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) auction. With only ₹8.75 crore in the bank, the three-time finalists needed to be wise with their decision-making.
Bangalore concentrated on strengthening their overall squad since they already had a decent playing XI in place. While RCB reached Qualifier 2 in IPL 2022, losing to the Rajasthan Royals (RR), they are well-placed to go a couple of steps further this time around.
Here are three issues RCB solved in the IPL 2023 auction.
#3 RCB acquired an excellent Glenn Maxwell backup in Will Jacks
RCB's most expensive purchase at the IPL 2023 auction was all-rounder Will Jacks. The Englishman commanded ₹3.2 crore, with Bangalore being firm in their desire to have him on their books.
Jacks has played only two T20Is and two Tests, but his quality has been evident in white-ball leagues around the world. The 24-year-old has a career T20 strike rate of 154.39 and is useful with the ball as well.
Most importantly, RCB managed to acquire a backup for star all-rounder Glenn Maxwell, with Jacks fitting the bill to perfection.
Maxwell is currently recovering from a freak leg injury, and his status for IPL 2023 is still up in the air. If the Aussie doesn't make it, Jacks will be a major value addition.
#2 RCB solved their overseas pacer issue to a decent extent
After trading Jason Behrendorff to the Mumbai Indians (MI), RCB needed to shore up their pace-bowling department, especially in the overseas category. Josh Hazlewood and David Willey were the only options on the roster, with the former starting to lose some of the sheen that made him a terrific T20 bowler.
Bangalore snapped up Reece Topley for ₹1.9 crore, their second-biggest buy at the IPL 2023 auction. The Englishman, like his aforementioned countryman, will be perfect for RCB. Not only is he a left-armer, adding variety to a pace attack that looks a touch one-dimensional with Mohammed Siraj, Harshal Patel, and Hazlewood, but he is also an international cricketer with a proven track record.
RCB were without a backup for Hazlewood, who has been dealing with a few injuries of late. With the acquisition of Topley, they plugged that hole.
#1 RCB signed X-factor and local players
RCB's other signings at the IPL 2023 auction were relatively unknown. Local boy Manoj Bhandage was one of their standout picks, signed for his base price of ₹20 lakh. Also making their way to the franchise were Himanshu Sharma, Rajan Kumar, Sonu Yadav, and Avinash Singh.
The latter two, in particular, are exciting prospects. While Sonu can hit the deck hard and contribute big hits with the bat, Avinash is a fast bowler with the ability to hit the 145-kmph mark. The Jammu and Kashmir quick is so unknown that barely any footage of him bowling in a competitive match exists.
RCB managed to snaffle unknown talents who could add an element of surprise while also adding some local flair to the side. That was, perhaps, their biggest takeaway from the IPL 2023 auction.
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