Will KL Rahul be retained by Punjab Kings? Owner Ness Wadia speaks out.

Will KL Rahul continue to play for the Punjab Kings in the coming season of the IPL?
Will KL Rahul continue to play for the Punjab Kings in the coming season of the IPL?

Punjab Kings co-owner Ness Wadia has shed some light on the possibility of retaining the services of their skipper and star batter KL Rahul ahead of the mega auction of the IPL 2022.

With two new teams added to the Indian Premier League, the 2022 season is set to be preceded by a mega auction that will see most of the current set of contracted players back in the auction pool.

The BCCI is yet to finalize the retention rules for the existing teams though and the internet is abuzz with prospective choices that teams could be looking to retain for the next cycle.

KL Rahul has been a success in the IPL and would have no shortage of suitors

One such sought-after player is Punjab Kings skipper KL Rahul. The swashbuckling opener had yet another bumper IPL campaign in 2021 that saw him accumulate 626 runs at an average of 62.60 and a strike-rate of 138.80.

Having said that, Punjab Kings co-owner Ness Wadia, in an interview to NDTV 24x7, suggested that it's not just about KL Rahul or any single player who makes up a team.

"There are many players apart from KL Rahul, firstly. One player does not make up a team, I've always said that. Having said that, every player has a value and one thing I will say is we've learnt to adjust and adapt throughout. Any team that hinges too much on one player, that does prove beyond a point a liability", said Wadia.

Wadia did go on to shower heavy praise on KL Rahul, though, and said:

'I think KL is exemplary in anything and everything he has done. The way he has fought back after going through a lot issues two years ago - he's one of the only cricketers who is consistent. But like I said cricket is about 11 team members, not one. As far as the right-to-match or retention (is concerned), whatever happens we're be ready for it. That's the IPL - we've learnt to adjust, adapt and go forward and keep smiling.'

Going by these words, whether KL Rahul will return to captain the Punjab Kings in the forthcoming IPL season or not is anybody's guess and his retention isn't written in stone per se. It may be noted that the Punjab Kings finished in 6th position in the points table for the second time running in the 2021 season, with Rahul leading the side since 2020.

Ahmedabad and Lucknow to debut in IPL 2022

Monday (October 25) saw bids put in for the two new IPL franchises up for sale in Dubai. In what was an incredible turn of events, the RPSG group led by Sanjeev Goenka shelled out INR 7090 crore to bag a franchise based out of Lucknow. CVC Capital Partners, a private equity firm, got hold of the Ahmedabad franchise for a sum of INR 5625 crore.

The BCCI will have an unenviable task at hand in ensuring a level-playing field for each of the ten teams ahead of the 2022 IPL player auction, considering that both new sides will have to build their outfits from scratch.

That said, should a player of KL Rahul's pedigree be up for grabs at the auction, it wouldn't be a surprise should either of the two new sides break the bank to acquire his services. His batting abilities aside, Rahul's captaincy experience over the last two seasons for Punjab Kings has raised his stock even further.

KL Rahul is currently a vital cog in the Indian team's campaign at the ICC Men's T20 World Cup. Having failed to register a score of note in the side's opening game against Pakistan, KL Rahul will be itching to bounce back with a significant contribution in India's next fixture against New Zealand on Sunday.

Get IPL 2023 Live Score along with Points Table & Schedule Updates at Sportskeeda.

Poll : Will Punjab Kings retain KL Rahul for the next season?



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Edited by Rohit Mishra
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