A mega-auction forms a crucial event in the growth of a franchise. The event defines the success of a franchise over at least three years. A series of mega-auction performances will add up to determine the legacy of a team. Usually, teams prefer to retain experienced cricketers before a mega-auction. However, at times, there is also an eye on talent and profit-making which could drive a franchise to retain uncapped cricketers. IPL 2022 mega-auctions is set to happen soon. A few uncapped cricketers could be retained before the event. In this article, we take a look at four uncapped players who have been retained before a mega-auction in IPL history so far.
1) Sanju Samson – IPL 2014 (Rajasthan Royals)
Sanju Samson is one of the uncapped players who have been retained before a mega-auction in IPL history so far. Although he was part of the tournament before, it was in 2013 that Sanju made his IPL debut. The Kerala batsman was part of the Rajasthan Royals then. In that campaign, the wicket-keeper batsman made 206 runs at an average of 25.73 and a strike rate of 115.73. The franchise retained him before IPL 2014 mega-auction for INR 4 Cr.
Sanju justified his talent and only kept on doing well for the franchise. There was a brief period in which he turned up for Delhi. However, since 2018, he has been with the team. In IPL 2021, he was appointed as captain of RR. He is also likely to be the first retention for the franchise before IPL 2022 mega-auctions.
2) Stuart Binny – IPL 2014 (Rajasthan Royals)
Stuart Binny is also one of the uncapped players who have been retained before a mega-auction. It was the Karnataka all-rounder’s performance in IPL 2013 that convinced Rajasthan Royals to retain him. In that campaign, Binny scored 293 runs at a strike rate of 147 apart from collecting six wickets.
A domestic pace-bowling all-rounder is a rarity in Indian cricket. Hence, Rajasthan Royals took the bet and retained the player, who was earlier part of the Indian Cricket League. Binny’s price was fixed at INR 5.5 Cr to continue playing for RR. In the later seasons, Binny did well in a few games but could never fulfil the expectations. He has now retired from the game.
3) Manan Vohra – IPL 2014 (Punjab Kings)
Manan Vohra is one of the most surprising retentions in the history of IPL. Very few fans had knowledge about the cricketer, but Punjab Kings made the brave decision of retaining him before a mega-auction. The player was retained at a price of INR 4 Cr.
Although the then youngster did well in 2014 by smacking 324 runs at an average of 40.50, Manan failed to justify his retention in the subsequent campaigns. He was later released to the auctions. Since then, Manan has been part of teams such as Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan Royals.
4) Sarfaraz Khan – IPL 2018 (Royal Challengers Bangalore)
RCB made the shocking retention of Sarfaraz Khan for INR 1.75 Cr before IPL 2018 mega-auctions. It shocked many because there were other capable retentions such as KL Rahul and Yuzvendra Chahal. That decision backfired in multiple ways. While Sarfraz failed to do well, KL Rahul went on to become an elite cricketer.
Sarfaraz joined Punjab Kings after getting released by RCB. Although he had a few fine outings at the start, opportunities have been hard to come by for the cricketer. In IPL 2022, if he gets a chance, the Mumbai player will look to do well.