The IPL 2022 mega auction is likely to be held in January 2022. Before that, franchises have been given the option to retain a certain number of players. All eight existing teams can retain a maximum of four players. The combination can be three Indians and one overseas player, or two Indians and two overseas players.
IPL 2022 will see the addition of two new franchises - Ahmedabad and Lucknow. Deadlines have been set for both existing and new franchises to pick players ahead of the mega auction.
The window for current teams to retain the players opened on November 1, and will close on November 30. After that, the two new teams can pick players from December 1 to December 25.
A few IPL 2021 star performers might be released
Since there is a cap on franchises retaining players, most teams might be forced to release players who performed well for them in IPL 2021. On that note, here’s a look at five such names:
#1 Harshal Patel
It will be an irony, without a doubt. However, there is a strong chance that Harshal Patel, who finished as the leading wicket-taker in IPL 2021, may not be retained by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
The 31-year-old recently made an impressive international debut during the T20I series against New Zealand. Before that, he had claimed 32 wickets in 15 matches at a strike rate of 10.56 in IPL 2021. That included a hat-trick as well as a five-wicket haul.
If we look at the options, RCB have former captain Virat Kohli and Australia’s batting all-rounder Glenn Maxwell, who look all set to be retained. Experienced leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal seems to have rediscovered his mojo, and is also likely to be picked.
The fourth place could be a tough toss-up between young opener Devdutt Paiddikal and pacer Mohammed Siraj.
#2 Faf du Plessis
Veteran South African batter Faf du Plessis was the second-leading run-getter in IPL 2021. Opening the batting for Chennai Super Kings (CSK), he amassed 633 runs in 16 games at a strike rate of 138.2, notching up six half-centuries.
He was also the player of the final, making a splendid 86 off 59 balls. So impressive was Du Plessis in the tournament that question marks were raised why he was not part of South Africa’s T20 World Cup 2021 campaign.
Du Plessis and Ruturaj Gaikwad (635 runs at a strike rate of 136.26) formed the most prolific opening combination in IPL 2021. Their performances, individually and as a pair, were primarily responsible for CSK lifting their fourth IPL title.
However, the age factor is likely to go against Du Plessis with regards to Chennai retaining him. At 37, he is not likely to be around for a long time, so CSK might release him, with an eye on the future.