Five surprising retentions by teams for IPL 2024

The player retention deadline, ending on November 26, 2023, marked surprising decisions by Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises ahead of the upcoming mini-auctions set for December 19 in Dubai.

While marquee players like Jofra Archer, Josh Hazlewood, and Pat Cummins faced releases from their franchises, some unexpected retentions caught attention during this phase.

Here are five players whose retentions raised eyebrows for IPL 2024:

1. Krunal Pandya (Lucknow SuperGiants)

five surprising retentions by teams for ipl 2024

Krunal Pandya. Photo: X/@krunalpandya24

  • The retention of the Rs 8.5 crore all-rounder, Krunal Pandya, was somewhat surprising given his modest performance in the IPL.
  • His batting averages in recent seasons have been 18.80, 20.33, 14.30, 18.16, and 16.33, resulting in an overall IPL average of 21.94 across 113 matches since 2016.
  • Pandya struggled with the bat in the last two seasons with Lucknow SuperGiants (LSG).
  • In the 2023 season, he suffered two duck dismissals and scored below 25 in four consecutive matches. However, his bowling remained relatively steady.
  • In 2023, Pandya secured 9 wickets in 15 matches, and in the preceding year, he claimed 10 scalps in 14 games.
  • This could be a contributing factor behind his retention by LSG.

2. Mayank Agarwal (Sunrisers Hyderabad)

five surprising retentions by teams for ipl 2024

Mayank Agarwal. (Photo: AFP)

  • The retention of Mayank Agarwal by SRH was another surprise, considering the top-order batter’s underwhelming performance relative to his substantial fee of Rs 8.25 crore. 
  • He averaged 27 in 10 matches during the 2023 season and 16.33 in 13 matches in 2022.
  • Despite playing in the IPL since 2011, Agarwal has not exhibited exceptional performance for any team in the past 13 years.
  • His standout season was in 2021 when he averaged 40.09 in 12 matches at a strike rate of 140.44. ‘
  • Subsequently, his value skyrocketed from Rs 1 crore to 12 crore, and he was appointed captain of Punjab Kings (PBKS). Agarwal’s retention was perplexing, especially considering SRH’s dismal 2023 season, finishing at the bottom of the table. This prompted expectations of the team releasing several players in a significant overhaul.

3. Prithvi Shaw (Delhi Capitals)

five surprising retentions by teams for ipl 2024

Prithvi Shaw. (Photo: AFP)

  • Despite being retained by Delhi Capitals at a substantial price of Rs 8 crore in 2023, Prithvi Shaw’s performance was notably poor.
  • The top-order batter averaged 13.25 in 8 matches and remained benched for the remaining fixtures due to his subpar display. 
  • Shaw’s retention appeared surprising given his ongoing battles with fitness issues and underwhelming performances in domestic T20 matches.
  • Considering Shaw’s overall IPL career, the Delhi batter has averaged 23.86 in 71 matches at a strike rate of 145.78. 
  • However, his potential to single-handedly turn matches with the bat might be the sole reason for his retention by the DC for IPL 2024.

4. Moeen Ali (Chennai Super Kings)

five surprising retentions by teams for ipl 2024

Moeen Ali. (Photo: PTI)

  • There didn’t seem to be any solid rationale supporting Moeen Ali for another IPL season following his underwhelming performance in 2023.
  • During IPL 2023, the all-rounder managed to score only 124 runs across 15 matches, averaging 15. Considering the hefty price tag of Rs 8 crore that the franchise is paying for him, this performance was far from impressive.
  • Therefore, his retention came as somewhat surprising. Moeen Ali isn’t generally perceived as a quintessential T20 player, given his moderate playing style.
  • Throughout his IPL career since 2018, the 36-year-old cricketer has participated in 59 matches, accumulating 1034 runs at an average of 22.48.

5. Venkatesh Iyer (Kolkata Knight Riders)

five surprising retentions by teams for ipl 2024

Venkatesh Iyer. (Photo: PTI)

  • It was surprising that KKR decided to release Pat Cummins, whom they retained at Rs 7.25 crore in 2022, while opting to retain Venkatesh Iyer, for whom they have been paying Rs 8 crore since 2022.
  • Although Iyer is an all-rounder, KKR hasn’t fully utilized his bowling abilities over the last two seasons.
  • In both 2022 and 2023, Iyer’s performances were below par.
  • Apart from scoring a century, the left-hander failed to deliver any significant match-winning innings for KKR. In the 2023 season, Iyer managed an average of only 28.86 in 14 matches. Therefore, the upcoming 2024 season will be crucial for him to justify his place in the side.
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