Former India all-rounder Yuvraj Singh was brought for a whopping amount of 14 cores in the 2014 Indian Premier League (IPL) auctions by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). During that season, RCB had superstar players like Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers, and Virat Kohli in the team. Yuvraj, back then, was used as the finisher of the team. He scored 376 runs at 34.18. Decent enough but not jaw-dropping like the amount of money shelled out on him during the auctions.
By his lofty standards, Yuvraj would have agreed that he didn’t have the best of the IPL seasons for RCB. Was is it due to lack of poor form? Or was it due to the pressure of high auction price? The reason is not known but there are numerous instances in the IPL where the teams have gone all-out to get a certain player but had to endure disappointment at the end of the season.
Glenn Maxwell is certainly one of those. He was purchased for 10.75 crores by PBKS but failed to have an impact as he could score only 108 runs that season. Still, that didn’t stop the franchises like RCB and CSK from going all the way to avail his services. So far, Maxwell has delivered for RCB after the management purchased him for 14.25 crores.
There are though two ways to it. While some have had good returns with huge prices, others have not quite lived up to the price tag. With the mega auctions coming up, few teams might think of not buying those players, who have failed to perform for the franchises respectively.
Here are some expensive players who might go unsold in the IPL mega auctions in 2022
1. Dan Christian
Australian all-rounder Dan Christian was purchased for 4.80 crores by RCB before the start of the 14th edition of the IPL. Mike Hesson, RCB director back then was impressed by getting the services of veteran all-rounder Christian, who made quite a name by playing some quality cricket in the BBL. Hesson and former RCB coach Simon Katich thought he would help finish off games, and his four overs would be handy.
Though, the opposite has happened. Maxwell and RCB’s other big signing Kyle Jamieson played the majority of the games in the ongoing season. Christian has so far played fewer games. He got a chance to play during RCB’s last match against RR. The all-rounder was taken for 21 runs in two overs. It remains to be seen if RCB give more chances during the remainder of the season.
Mega auctions are scheduled in February 2022, and by the looks of it, RCB and other franchises might not bid for Christian due to his middling returns.
2. Riley Meredith
Riley Meredith made heads turn when he was purchased by PBKS for 8 crores. Head coach Anil Kumble was happy acquiring his services since they wanted an express pace bowler who could hit the hard lengths well. Meredith has the ability to consistently ball at 140-plus and trouble the batters with extra bounce. His good performances for Hobart Hurricanes landed him an IPL deal.
In the India leg of the IPL, Meredith played five games and picked up just four wickets. His economy rate was also touching on the higher side as he gave 9.94 runs per over. The pacer also made himself unavailable during the UAE leg of the IPL. By the first impression of Meredith, the franchise might not retain him or use the right to match (RTM) card for the Australian pacer.
The other franchises would have also analyzed his bowling style, his strengths, and weakness. Hence, Meredith might not go for such a huge price during the mega auctions.
3. Jaydev Unadkat
Saurashtra pacer Jaydev Unadkat had a breakthrough IPL season 2017 for the now-defunct team Rising Pune Supergiant. He picked up 24 wickets and was instrumental in the team reaching the finals. Naturally, with such humongous success, the expectations from the other franchises grew multi-fold, and they wanted Unadkat in the squad.
After an intense bidding war, RR snapped the left-arm pacer for 11.5 crores. Initially, the management backed him and gave him opportunities throughout that season. That consistency of taking wickets of taking wickets was not to be seen. Unadkat took just 11 wickets in 15 games and didn’t quite live up to the hefty price tag. The coming two seasons also didn’t have favorable results for the left-arm pacer, and worst he was also dropped from the squad.
The emergence of Chetan Sakariya, Karthik Tyagi, and Mustafizur Rahman in the ranks for this season meant dwindling opportunities.
4. Tom Curran
After a fierce bidding war with SRH, Tom Curran was sold to DC for 5.25 crores. The franchise wanted to invest in a player who was good with the ball and handy with the bat. Curran knew that he had to make a mark during the India leg of the IPL as DC’s premier bowler Anrich Nortje missed a few games due to testing COVID positive. Rightly, the senior of the two brothers, Curran was handed a chance by the DC management.
The all-rounder, though, could not quite make any significant contributions whatsoever. He gave 75 runs off 46 delivers he bowled during the two games that he played for DC. Nortje was slotted in the playing XI in the UAE leg of the IPL.
Currently, he is not available for the UAE leg. Overall he has played 12 games in the IPL, getting 10 wickets at a high economy rate of 11.14 runs per over. Such inconsistency in the performance might not help him fetch big deals in the mega auction.
5. Jhye Richardson
While it was expected that Australian batter Glenn Maxwell will go big during the actions earlier this year, no one anticipated his collogue Jhye Richardson getting a jaw-dropping price of 14 crores. PKBS were hell-bent on having a wicket-taking bowler in their team, and they opted to go for Richardson, who had the reputation of being skiddy and pacey at the same time.
The pacer got to play three games for PBKS and took three wickets during the India leg of the IPL. He gave away 117 runs in 66 balls. The economy rate of 10.64 would not have made the PBKS management happy. Richardson was also not effective as other pacers Kagiso Rabada, Chis Morris, Sam Curran, and Jasprit Bumrah. The Australian pacer has made him unavailable for the UAE leg of the IPL.
With his relatively unimpressive performance in three games so far it remains to be seen if PBKS still retains him in the auctions.