The BCCI recently released the list of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 player auction. A total of 590 cricketers will go under the hammer during the two-day mega auction, which will take place in Bengaluru on February 12 and 13. Of the 590 cricketers, 228 are capped players, and 355 are uncapped players, while 7 belong to Associate Nations. A total of 370 Indian players and 220 overseas players will be available for bidding at the auction. 48 players have put themselves in the highest reserve base of INR 2 crore. There are 20 players with a base price of INR 1.5 crore and 34 players with a base price of INR 1 crore. We take a look at five big names who might go unsold at the auction.
1. Suresh Raina (Base Price – 2 crore): The former Chennai Super Kings (CSK) cricketer is one of the most successful batters in the history of the IPL. He is one of the few players to have amassed over 5000 runs in the T20 league. In 205 matches, Raina has amassed 5528 runs at a strike rate of 136.76 with one hundred and 39 fifties. However, he has struggled for the rhythm of late and has retired from international cricket as well. After missing the 2020 edition due to personal reasons, he managed only 160 runs in 12 games in IPL 2021 with one solitary half-century. He was out of favor by the time the knockouts came. It doesn’t seem like franchises will be interested in purchasing a player past his sell-by date.
2. Ajinkya Rahane (Base Price – 1 crore): The former India Test vice-captain has been having a torrid time of late. Once a part of all three formats in international cricket, Ajinkya Rahane gradually got reduced to a Test player, and now his place in that version is also in danger after two years of the barren run. His story is similar to the IPL. Between 2012 and 2019, he scored over 300 runs in every season – more than 500 in 2012 and 2015. However, like in international cricket, his fortunes have sunk shockingly in the IPL as well. He scored 113 runs in nine matches in 2020 and eight runs in two matches in 2021. Franchises might find buying him too big a risk.
3. Eoin Morgan (Base Price – 1.5 crore): Eoin Morgan is sailing in a similar boat to Rahane. He has been having a terrible run in international cricket as well as the IPL. Since the start of 2021, Morgan has featured in 18 T20I matches and has scored 180 runs at an average of 16.36. In IPL 2021, he managed only 133 runs in 17 games at an average of 11.08 and a strike rate of 95.68. Morgan did lead Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) to the IPL 2021 final. But as a batter, he is unlikely to add much value to any side.
4. Dinesh Karthik (Base Price – 2 crore): 36-year-old Dinesh Karthik may still have hopes of making the Indian team for the T20 World Cup. However, the reality is even his hopes of getting an IPL contract are slim. Karthik struggled with the bat for KKR in IPL 2021. He played 17 matches but managed only 223 runs at an average of 22.30. In 2020 as well, he scored just 169 runs in 14 games. His lack of consistency clearly hurt the franchise, and the age factor is also not on his side.
5. Marnus Labuschagne (Base Price – 1 crore): This is an interesting one. Marnus Labuschagne is one of the biggest names in international cricket at present. He has established himself as one of the best Test batters and is very good in ODIs as well. But despite all the strokes in the book, he has not made much of an impression as a T20 player. In fact, he is yet to make his debut for Australia in the format and has played only 25 T20 games so far. He may have the talent, but franchises might be unwilling to risk the untested Labuschagne.