Ahead of the player retentions before Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, former India batsman Aakash Chopra said Rajasthan Royals should enter the tournament under the leadership of a new skipper. Australian batting mainstay Steve Smith led the Royals in last year’s IPL. The Rajasthan based side had a topsy-turvy ride in the showpiece event. The Royals were looking good after England’s star all-rounder Ben Stokes made a return, but still finished the league at the bottom of the table. Chopra feels a new captain should be on the priority list of the Royals as the team has failed to deliver. The former batsman also listed out a few names which the side must retain ahead of the auction.
“On paper, Rajasthan Royal feels like the one of the most complete teams in the IPL, but on the field, the team has failed to impress even its staunch supporters,” Chopra said on Star Sports show “IPL: Retention Special.”
“Though RR had something to cheer about in Rahul Tewatia and Riyan Parag last season, they still finished at the bottom of the table. I feel the team needs a new leader and that has to be at the top of the priority list next season.
“I think the team should not release their current young talents such as Akash Singh, Mahipal Lomror, Mayank Markande, Anuj Rawat, and Kartik Tyagi,” he added.
With the mini-auction ahead of the 14th edition of the IPL inching closer, franchises looking to retain players were asked to complete the process by Wednesday.
Indian opener Rohit Sharma led Mumbai Indians to their fifth IPL title last year and played a captain’s knock in the final against Delhi Capitals.
Chopra feels Mumbai Indians have checked all boxes as the defending champions are the most potent sides in the league.
“Coming to the defending champions Mumbai Indians, they currently possess the dream squad. There are a lot of highly talented players who are almost like-for-like replacements on the bench,” said Chopra.
“Now, with the possible return of Lasith Malinga, the team could be less experimental with the overseas players,” Chopra said.
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