Now that former Rajasthan Royals skipper Steve Smith has been released, he would certainly be on the radar of many teams ahead of the mini-auctions in February. The Royals may not have made it to the playoffs last year in UAE, but Smith’s form with the bat was not all that bad. He amassed 311 runs in 14 games at an average of 25.91 – which is nowhere close to his best. So, who are the teams that would need him desperately?

Looks like Chennai Super Kings – who did not make the playoffs for the first time ever would be frontrunners while bidding for the former Australian captain at the mini-auction.

Watson’s Replacement | With Shane Watson having pulled the curtains on his career, Smith – who has opened in the past – could be looked at as a like-for-like replacement. He is a proper batsman and Smith who is 31 years – could easily serve CSK for at least four more seasons. He brings experience to the table as the team needs it with big players retiring or on the verge of calling it a day.

Dhoni-Smith Combo | It could be a killer combination and what could make it special is the fact that the two great cricketers have played with each other in the past at the Rising Pune Supergiants. That year, RPS managed to make it to the summit clash. This could be another major factor that would entice CSK to buy Smith.

Once a captain, always a captain | Yes, he is a skipper at heart! His leadership skills along with Dhoni’s experience could just be the recipe for the turnaround of the team after a forgettable season. During crunch situations, Dhoni could walk up to Smith for advice. Also, with Dhoni entering the dusk of his illustrious cricketing career – Smith could take over the leadership mantle.