The IPL Mega Auction is set to begin on February 12th. Each of the prior teams had chosen between 2-4 players they wanted to retain and correspondingly have a purse to spend. The 2 new teams, the Lucknow SuperGiants owned by the RPSG group, and the team based in Ahmedabad owned by CVC Capital (it is yet to be named), have already chosen 3 players in the auction pool to lay the foundation for their team. So, let’s take a look at some top players that each franchise would look to buy. There are some notable absentees, namely England players like Sam Curran, Ben Stokes, and Jofra Archer, so I have left them off the list. Lucknow has chosen KL Rahul to lead their team, as well as Marcus Stoinis and the up-and-coming leg-spinner, Ravi Bishnoi. Ahmedabad chose Hardik Pandya as the skipper, with Rashid Khan, and Shubman Gill

CHENNAI SUPER KINGS

Retentions: Ravindra Jadeja, MS Dhoni, Moeen Ali, and Ruturaj Gaikwad

Remaining Purse: 48 crore

CSK’s 4 retentions were very expected. They chose Ravindra Jadeja because he is a brilliant all-rounder and match-winner. MS Dhoni or ‘Thala’ is the heart and soul of the team, and of course, he was retained. Ruturaj Gaikwad was the highest run-scorer (and orange cap winner last year) and a fantastic opener. Finally, Moeen Ali was chosen because he gives them flexibility in batting and bowling. A few of the players they will miss heading into the auction are Faf du Plessis, Ruturaj’s opening partner, Dwayne Bravo, a veteran who specializes in death-overs bowling, the ‘Chinna Thala’ Suresh Raina, the up-and-coming Shardul Thakur, and Deepak Chahar, their opening pace bowler. They will likely look to rebuy many of these players in the auction. 

Players to buy: R Ashwin, Mark Wood, Trent Boult, Deepak Chahar, Faf, Thakur, and KS Bharat.

Ashwin is a good option because he is familiar with the Chennai franchise and can give them some good powerplay overs with the ball. Mark Wood, from England, is also important because he gives them a whole new dimension of pace that CSK could previously only dream of. Chahar should also be bought because of his early swing with the new ball. Same with Trent Boult, who proved his new-ball value with MI. They would look at KS Bharat, who is a young wicket-keeper who could replace MSD later on, something the franchise may have to do as early as next year. 

DELHI CAPITALS

Retentions: Rishabh Pant, Anrich Nortje, Axar Patel, Prithvi Shaw

Remaining Purse: 47.5 Crore

Unsurprisingly, Delhi chose Rishabh Pant as their captain because he is the future of their franchise. However, they had a few questionable retentions like Anrich Nortje and Axar Patel. This meant that they left out players like Rabada, Shikhar Dhawan, and R Ashwin, much to the delight of the other teams. 

DC should look to buy: Dawid Malan, Adam Zampa, Shikhar Dhawan, Kagiso Rabada, Pat Cummins, and Shakib al Hasan

Malan should be good for the team because he can give Delhi good middle-overs batting. Zampa is one of the best spinners in the world, as is Shakib al Hasan. Both would pair nicely with Axar Patel. Pat Cummins is a fantastic pace-bowler, giving the captain all-around flexibility. 

ROYAL CHALLENGERS BANGALORE

Retentions: Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell, Md. Siraj

Remaining Purse: 57 Crore

With Kohli leaving the RCB captaincy, and AB DeVilliers’ retirement, RCB will look to rebound strongly in the auction. Missing from their retention list is expert spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, the Purple Cap winner, Harshal Patel, and the promising Devdutt Paddikal. They will attempt to buy them back. 

Should look to buy: Shreyas Iyer, David Warner, Faf du Plessis, Jos Buttler, and Pat Cummins

RCB has to find captaincy options now that Kohli has stepped down. Iyer, Warner, du Plessis, and Buttler all have experience being captains and any one of them can help get RCB its maiden title. The latter three are also opening partners for Kohli. Cummins can be RCB’s leading bowler, as he is one of the best in the world.

MUMBAI INDIANS

Retained: Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Kieron Pollard, Suryakumar Yadav

Remaining Purse: 48 crore

Mumbai’s retainments were very predictable. Rohit and Bumrah are match-winners and have long been strongly associated with the franchise. Pollard is an experienced veteran who provides leadership, and Suryakumar Yadav is a brilliant batsman in the middle overs. They have left out Ishan Kishan, and Quinton de Kock, and will likely rebuy them.

Should look to buy: Evin Lewis, Mitchell Marsh, and Kagiso Rabada

Lewis is a good buy because he is the type of player that fits MI’s playing style, and can attack in the powerplay overs. Mitchell Marsh can fill in for Hardik Pandya, and Rabada will create a dynamic pace duo with Bumrah. 

KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS

Retained: Andre Russell, Varun Chakravarthy, Sunil Narine, Venkatesh Iyer

Remaining Purse: 48 crore

KKR chose Andre Russell and Narine along with Chakravarthy and Venkatesh Iyer. Venkatesh Iyer is a promising opening batsman. Chakravarthy and Narine are very cunning spinners which makes the middle overs very difficult to score on. Finally, Andre Russell provides big-hitting capabilities to finish off an innings. 

Players they should look to buy: Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan, Mohammed Shami, Shardul Thakur

KKR should look to buy young players by getting youngsters like Ishan Kishan, Shardul Thakur, etc. They should look to fill their captaincy vacancy by getting someone like Shreyas Iyer, who is also not that old. Shami is a very accurate opening bowler and gets the ball swinging. 

PUNJAB KINGS, SUNRISERS HYDERABAD, & RAJASTHAN ROYALS

Retained: Punjab retained Mayank Agarwal and Arshdeep Singh. They have 72 crores left.

Sunrisers retained Kane Williamson, Abdul Samad, and Umran Malik, and have 68 crores remaining. 

Rajasthan has retained Sanju Samson, Jos Buttler, and Yashasvi Jaiswal and have 62 crores remaining.

These teams and the two new ones have no clear choice of players to buy, but they should look for talented young players. 


Adi Anand is 13-years-old and an 8th grader living in San Jose, California. He is an avid cricketer and sports aficionado.