Delhi Daredevils today predictably released veteran left-hander Yuvraj Singh from their squad while India's pace spearhead Ishant Sharma was off-loaded by Sunrisers Hyderabad in the first trading window for the upcoming 9th season of Indian Premier League (IPL).
Despite getting back to the Indian team for the T20 leg of the Australian tour, Yuvraj, who was bought for a whopping Rs 16 crore by the GMR-owned franchise, turned out to be the biggest flop with only 248 runs from 14 matches at an average of less than 20 (19.07).
"Yuvraj Singh is a great player and the reason of releasing him is to rationalise our budget. He is in good form now and has got back to the Indian team. But there were budgetary constraints which led to the decision. I have personally spoken to Yuvraj. There are no hard feelings," Daredevils CEO Hemant Dua told PTI today.
In fact among existing six teams in IPL, Delhi Daredevils will be going into the February auction with a purse of Rs 36.85 to spend on salary of players.
"We have also released Angelo Mathews. So we are saving around Rs 23 crores (as mathews was bought for Rs 7 crore)," said Dua.
Some of the other prominent players to be released are Kings XI Punjab's last year's captain and former Aussie skipper George Bailey. Another former captain to bite the dust was West Indies' Darren Sammy, who was released by Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Former India spinner Pragyan Ojha, Australian paceman Josh Hazlewood were released by Mumbai Indians.
In all, Daredevils have released 10 players while KXIP and Sunrisers released eight including Virender Sehwag, who has already called it quits.
RCB have released the maximum of 14 players while Mumbai Indians and KKR released 10 players each.
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With DD going into auction with Rs 36.85 crore, Sunrisers are second in the list with Rs 30.15 crores. Mumbai Indians, who have retained a maximum of 19 players, have the least purse of Rs 14.405 crore.
KKR with 15 retentions are second lowest in terms of purse at Rs 17.95 crore. KXIP and RCB are left with Rs 23 crore and Rs 21.625 crore purse, respectively.
The two new franchises -- Intex Rajkot and Sanjeev Goenka's Pune franchise -- have Rs 27 crore to shop from the auctions having picked up five players each from banned Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Rajasthan Royals (RR) during the players draft held in Mumbai, earlier this month.
Veteran Zaheer Khan has been retained by DD as this will be his farewell season, where he would perhaps play a few games here and there but will don the bigger role of mentoring the pace bowlers of the Delhi team including one of India's premier fast bowlers in Mohammed Shami.
Two of the Bengal boys Manoj Tiwary (DD) and Ashoke Dinda (RCB) have been released by their respective franchises but there are chances that both might be picked by Pune Franchise during the auction.
Kedar Jadhav is the only player, who has been traded during this window with Daredevils selling him to RCB.
Most of the teams have been able to retain their core set-up. KKR have Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa in their set-up, KXIP have retained David Miller, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Johnson for the next season.
Similarly, Mumbai Indians will have Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Rohit Sharma, Lasith Malinga, who have been with them for years now.
RCB also kept their core unit tight with skipper Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Chris Gayle in the team.