Ajinkya Rahane (L) and Steven Smith    AFP
Ajinkya Rahane (L) and Steven Smith AFP

With a few days to ago for all IPL franchises to submit their final retention list, Rajasthan Royals (RR) may take a different route. Royals are most likely looking forward to use their RTM card in order to retain the services of Ajinkya Rahane and Steven Smith instead of retaining them directly.

In case you don’t know…

According to retention policy for upcoming IPL auction 2018, each team can retain a maximum of three players and use two RTM cards, taking the total number of players to retain to five. Teams can opt to retain three and use two RTMs or vice versa and keep a maximum of five players.

Barring Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Royals, all other sides can pick players from their IPL 2017 squad. On the other hand, Royals and Super Kings will be able to retain their players from their last appearance, i.e. IPL 2015. Hence, the pool of players for both CSK and RR is limited. Royals will be on their toes to win back the services of their key players James Faulkner, Rahane and Smith.

Following the IPL retention policy’s final decision taken on December 6, Royals owner, Manoj Badale stated: “We recognise that the BCCI s efforts are towards creating a resilient and competitive tournament, however, we would have preferred a different outcome on this occasion.”

The IPL 2018 auction will take place on January 27 and 28 at Bengaluru.