Michael Clarke

Michael Clarke had one-year contract with the Pune franchise AFP

Mumbai: Nov 1, 2012

Australian captain Michael Clarke and South Africa’s Test captain Graeme Smith and hard-hitting New Zealander Jesse Ryder have returned to the auction pool as Pune Warriors decided to retain six foreign players who were there with the franchise during last edition.

While Clarke had a one-year contract and had to return to the auction pool, Smith who doesn’t play international T20 anymore wasn’t a very viable option for the Warriors. Ryder, who hasn’t played any competitive cricket since IPL was also left out.

The media release sent by the IPL committee also proved that speculations in some quarters regarding Mumbai Indians‘ decision to release Harbhajan Singh and Chennai Super Kings getting rid of their ‘Million Dollar Baby’ Ravindra Jadeja were baseless. Both are very much there with their respective franchises.

New owners of Hyderabad franchise Sun TV have decided to release Australian all-rounder Dan Christian who fetched a whopping USD 900,000 during the January, 2011 auctions.

According to the initial squads confirmed by the IPL teams for next year, Rajasthan Royals have retained the least number of players (14) and ended up with a salary cap balance of Rs 8,423,261 — the highest among the nine IPL franchises.

Mumbai Indians, on the other hand, have retained the maximum number of players (27) and has the least available salary cap balance. Contrary to speculations that out-of-form Harbhanjan Singh would be dumped by the franchise, the off-spinner prominently feature in Mumbai’s line-up.

Defending champion Kolkata Knight Riders, meanwhile, have retained 22 players, while Kings XI Punjab has retained 19 players and has the second highest salary cap balance (Rs.7,219,565).

Delhi Daredevils have retained 18 players, including all its seven foreign recruits but dumped Rajasthan batsman Robin Bist as he is considered totally unsuitable for the shortest format.

Jadeja too managed to hold on to his place in the Chennai Super Kings set-up as the franchise has retained 15 players, including six foreign players.

According to statement from the BCCI, a total of 179 players have managed to retain their contracts.

“The Franchises have clearly focussed on performance in the IPL in making their decisions as to which players will form part of their respective core groups for the 2013 season,” IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla said in the statement.

“Each Franchise has room under the salary cap to be able to sign additional players, either by trading or in the auction or, in the case of uncapped Indian players, by direct agreement with the player in question.”

Each franchise has a salary cap of up to USD 12.5m to spend on their 2013 squad of upto 33 players, of whom a maximum of 11 can be from overseas. Only four overseas players can figure in the starting XI for any match.

The trading window will open on November 19 and the same day onwards, the franchises will be able to sign new uncapped Indian players, including the 52 players whose contracts were not extended, the release added.

The franchises also have the option of re-signing the players who they took as temporary replacements in IPL 2012.