A total of 18 players has been retained by their previous IPL teams ahead of the mega 2018 auction scheduled to take place in Bangalore on the 27 and 28 of January.
Each team is given the ‘Right to Match’ (RTM) option at the auction to reclaim a player who played with their team last season after the bidding for him has been finished. Knowing the final sum that the player would have been bought for, the IPL team can choose to instead use the card and keep the player back.
And Virender Sehwag, the Mentor, and Head of Cricket Operations of Kings XI Punjab has revealed that the franchise would be using their two RTM Cards on Indian players and one Right to Match Card on a foreign player.
KXIP have an option of using all the three RTM cards as they retained just one player at the retention event in Mumbai. KXIP can now use it’s RTM cards on players like Hashim Amla, David Miller, Glenn Maxwell, Manan Vohra, Mohit Sharma, Sandeep Sharma to name a few.
On the list of Indian players, Sandeep Sharma is the favorite player to be retained by KXIP as he has emerged out a star for their side. He has already shown his ability to take wickets with the new ball with his swing, and in addition to that, he can also bowl in death overs, which will go in his favour.
Sandeep is expected to get a good price in IPL auction but might play for his previous franchise again.
The second Indian player on which the franchise would use the RTM card is difficult to guess as there was no standout player for the side in the last season. Still, they might use it on Mohit Sharma or Manan Vohra. Both can deliver a surprise on any given day, as seen in previous editions.
The foreign player on whom the franchise would use the RTM card is an easy one as Hashim Amla seems to be an automatic choice. He proved his worth with the bat in the previous season and scored two centuries for the side. Also, if KXIP would have wanted to retain stars like Glenn Maxwell and David Miller, then they would have retained them before as they will now be a hot property in the auction. So, Amla seems to be that one player on whom the franchise might use the RTM card.