The strongest team ahead of IPL 2021

·6-min read

The Indian Premier League (IPL) has entered its 14th season with the 2021 edition, which begins on April 9. The first T20 match will be between Virat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and Rohit Sharma’s Mumbai Indians (MI). Eight teams, namely Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kolkata Knight Riders, Rajasthan Royals, Punjab Kings, Sunrisers Hyderabad, and Delhi Capitals, will fight against each other to lift the trophy.

The 2021 season promises to live up to the hype after a crazy auction that saw 8 teams spend a total of 145.30 crore rupees.

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Virat Kohli’s RCB decided to part ways with Chris Morris, Shivam Dube, Aaron Finch, Umesh Yadav, Dale Steyn, Moeen Ali, Parthiv Patel, Pawan Negi, Isuru Udana and Gurkeerat Mann for the 2021 season. They bought Kyle Jamieson (All-Rounder) – Rs. 15 crore, Glenn Maxwell (All-Rounder) – Rs. 14.25 crore, Dan Christian (All-Rounder)- Rs. 4.8 crore, Sachin Baby (Batsman) Rs. 20 lakh, Rajat Patidar (Batsman) - Rs. 20 lakh, Mohammed Azharudeen (Wicket-Keeper) - Rs. 20 lakh, Suyash Prabhudesai (All-Rounder) – Rs. 20 lakh, Kona Srikar Bharat (Wicket Keeper)- 20 Lakh in the IPL auction to boost their challenge.

The franchise also decided to retain 12 players in the team. Along with skipper Virat, RCB agreed to retain AB de Villiers, Devdutt Padikkal, Mohammad Siraj, Navdeep Saini, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Joshua Phillipe, Pavan Deshpande, Shahbaz Ahmed, Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson. Looks like they got it this time around.

Punjab Kings

New name and a host of new players for this IPL team. Punjab added depth to their squad by adding Jhye Richardson (Bowler) - Rs. 14 crore, Riley Meredith (Bowler) - Rs. 8 crore, Shahrukh Khan (All-Rounder) - Rs. 5.25 crore, Moises Henriques (All-Rounder) - Rs. 4.2 crore, Dawid Malan (All-Rounder) - Rs. 1.5 crore, Fabian Allen (All-Rounder) - Rs. 75 lakh, Jalaj Saxena (All-Rounder) - Rs. 30 lakh, Saurabh Kumar (All-Rounder) - Rs. 20 lakh and Utkarsh Singh (all-rounder) for Rs. 20 lakh.

They released Glenn Maxwell, Sheldon Cottrell, Mujeeb Zadran, Hardus Viljoen, James Neesham, Krishnappa Gowtham, Karun Nair, Jagadeesha Suchith, Tejinder Singh Dhillon and retained retained KL Rahul, Arshdeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Darshan Nalkande, Harpreet Brar, Mandeep Singh, Mayank Agarwal, Mohd. Shami, M Ashwin, Nicholas Pooran, Sarfaraz Khan, Deepak Hooda, Ishan Porel, Ravi Bishnoi, Chris Jordan, and Prabhsimran Singh.

Mumbai Indians

The 'can’t-do-anything-wrong' team of the IPL brought in Nathan Coulter-Nile (Bowler) - Rs. 5 crore, Adam Milne- (Bowler) – Rs. 3.2 crore, Piyush Chawla (Bowler) – Rs. 2.4 crore, James Neesham (All-Rounder) – Rs. 50 lakh, Yudhvir Charak (All-Rounder) - Rs. 20 lakh, Marco Jansen (All-Rounder) – Rs. 20 lakh and one Arjun Tendulkar (All-Rounder) for Rs. 20 lakh.

The serial champions retained Rohit Sharma, Aditya Tare, Anmolpreet Singh, Anukul Roy, Dhawal Kulkarni, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Jasprit Bumrah, Jayant Yadav, Kieron Pollard, Krunal Pandya, Quinton de Kock, Rahul Chahar, Suryakumar Yadav, Trent Boult, Chris Lynn, Saurabh Tiwary and Mohsin Khan. MI looks set to break/create new records this season too.

Chennai Super Kings

They had a forgettable outing in the last edition of the cash-rich league and will be more than eager to settle some scores this time around. The MS Dhoni’s side added Krishnappa Gowtham (All-Rounder) – Rs. 9.25 crore, Moeen Ali (All-Rounder) – Rs. 7 crore, Cheteshwar Pujara (Batsman) – Rs. 50 lakh, K Bhagath Varma (All-Rounder) - Rs. 20 lakh, C Hari Nishaanth (Batsman) - Rs. 20 lakh, Harisankar Reddy (Bowler) - Rs. 20 lakh and got rid of Kedar Jadhav, Murali Vijay, Harbhajan Singh, Piyush Chawla, Monu Singh and Shane Watson to mount a new challenge.

The three-time IPL champions also retained Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, KM Asif, Deepak Chahar, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, N Jagadeesan, Karn Sharma, Lungi Ngidi, Mitchell Santner, Ravindra Jadeja, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shardul Thakur, Sam Curran, Josh Hazlewood and R Sai Kishore despite finishing 7th in the points table in IPL 2020.

Delhi Capitals

The finalists of the last season, the Delhi Capitals, are a serious contender for the 2021 trophy. DC added Tom Curran (All-Rounder) - Rs. 5.25 crore, Steven Smith (Batsman) - Rs. 2.2 crore, Sam Billings (Wicket-Keeper) - Rs. 2 crore, Umesh Yadav (Bowler) - Rs. 1 Crore, Ripal Patel (All-Rounder) - Rs. 20 Lakh, Vishnu Vinod (Wicket-Keeper) – Rs. 20 Lakh, Lukman Hussain Meriwala (Bowler) – Rs. 20 Lakh and M Siddharth (Bowler) for Rs. 20 Lakh in their squad.

Delhi got rid of Alex Carey, Keemo Paul, Tushar Deshpande, Sandeep Lamichhane, Mohit Sharma and Jason Roy for the 2021 season. They, however, retained Shreyas Iyer, Ajinkya Rahane, Amit Mishra, Avesh Khan, Axar Patel, Harshal Patel, Ishant Sharma, Kagiso Rabada, Prithvi Shaw, R Ashwin, Rishabh Pant, Shikhar Dhawan, Shimron Hetmyer, Marcus Stoinis, Lalit Yadav, Anrich Nortje, Daniel Sams, Pravin Dubey and Chris Woakes.

Sunrisers Hyderabad

The 2016 champions retained David Warner, Abhishek Sharma, Basil Thampi, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jonny Bairstow, Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Sandeep Sharma, Shahbaz Nadeem, Shreevats Goswami, Siddarth Kaul, Khaleel Ahmed, T Natarajan, Vijay Shankar, Wriddhiman Saha, Virat Singh, Priyam Garg, Mitchell Marsh, Jason Holder and Abdul Samad ahead of the auction.

The five players which Sunrisers Hyderabad released were Billy Stanlake, Sandeep Bavanaka, Fabian Allen, Sanjay Yadav and Prithviraj Yarra. The team from the South got Kedar Jadhav (All-Rounder) – Rs. 2 crore, Mujeeb-ur-Rahman (Bowler) - Rs. 1.5 crore and J Suchith (Bowler) – Rs. 30 lakh in IPL auction 2021.

Rajasthan Royals

The winner in 2008 boosted their squad by bringing in the likes of Christopher Morris (all-rounder) – Rs. 16.25 crore, Shivam Dube (All-Rounder) – Rs. 4.4 crore, Chetan Sakariya (Bowler) – Rs. 1.2 crore, Mustafizur Rahman (Bowler) – Rs. 1 crore, Liam Livingstone (All-Rounder) - Rs. 75 lakh, KC Cariappa (Bowler) – Rs. 20 lakh, Akash Singh (Bowler) – Rs. 20 lakh and Kuldip Yadav (Bowler) – Rs. 20 lakh in the auction.

Royals also retained 17 players in the team for the 2021 season. The list of retained players include Sanju Samson, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Mahipal Lomror, Manan Vohra, Mayank Markande, Rahul Tewatia, Riyan Parag, Shreyas Gopal, Robin Uthappa, Jaydev Unadkat, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Anuj Rawat, Kartik Tyagi, David Miller and Andrew Tye. Rajasthan parted ways with Steve Smith, Akash Singh, Anirudha Joshi, Ankit Rajpoot, Oshane Thomas, Shashank Singh, Tom Curran and Varun Aaron.

Kolkata Knight Riders

The 2012 and 2014 winners added Shakib Al Hasan (All-Rounder) - Rs. 3.2 crore, Harbhajan Singh (Bowler) - Rs. 2 crore, Ben Cutting (All-Rounder) - Rs. 75 lakh, Karun Nair (Batsman) - Rs. 50 lakh, Pawan Negi (All-Rounder) - Rs. 50 lakh, Venkatesh Iyer (All-Rounder) - Rs. 20 lakh, Sheldon Jackson (Wicket-Keeper) - Rs. 20 lakh and Vaibhav Arora (Bowler) for Rs. 20 lakh in their squad.

KKR parted ways with Chris Green, Harry Gurney, M Siddharth, Nikhil Naik, Siddhesh Lad and Tom Banton for this year’s IPL. Eoin Morgan, Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Lockie Ferguson, Nitish Rana, Prasidh Krishna, Rinku Singh, Sandeep Warrier, Shivam Mavi, Shubman Gill, Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Rahul Tripathi, Varun Chakravarthy and Tim Seifert were retained in their squad.

IPL 2021 is all set to entertain the world with its glamorous and nail-biting matches. It's time to toss the coin and see who’s got it.

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