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From Suresh Raina to Eoin Morgan, five big players who went unsold in the Indian T20 League mega auction

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Ten franchises, 204 players. This was the number recorded by the end of the Indian T20 League 2022 mega auction

Big bucks were splashed as wicket-keeper batsman Ishan Kishan bagged a whopping INR 15.25 crore contract while pacer Avesh Khan broke the record for the most expensive uncapped player in the history of the competition. The former Delhi bowler was snapped by new franchise, Team Lucknow, who decided to pay INR 10 crore for the 25-year-old.

While young players stole the limelight throughout the auction, the 2022 edition saw several big names and seasoned T20 players going unsold. Here, we take a look at five of them.

Suresh Raina (India)

The fourth leading run-getter of the Indian T20 League failed to find a suitor as Suresh Raina went unsold after entering with a base price of INR 2 crore. At 35 years of age, the left-handed batter still has a lot left in his tank, but his price tag of INR 2 crore proved to be the stumbling block.

On top of that, his last season’s tally of a mere 160 runs in 12 matches at 17.77 didn’t help his cause either. It’s interesting to note that this is the first time in the Indian T20 League history that Raina failed to find a suitor in the auction.

“Raina has been one of the most consistent performers for Chennai for the last 12 years,” said CEO Kasi Viswanath after being asked why the team decided not to bid for Raina. 

“Of course, it was very difficult for us, no to have Raina but at the same time you should also understand that the team composition depends on the form and kind of team which any team would like to have so that’s one of the reasons why we thought he may not fit into this team,” he added.

Aaron Finch (Australia)

Australia’s limited-overs captain Aaron Finch was another one of the high profile players who didn’t get a bid from any franchise. 

In all fairness, Finch hasn’t really performed at his full potential in the Indian T20 League in recent years. Finch, who has played for as many as eight Indian T20 League teams in the past, guided Australia to their maiden ICC T20I World Cup win last year and is the fifth-highest scorer in T20Is, having scored 2,616 runs in 84 outings.

While his international figures are supreme, his record in the Indian T20 League has been anything but. His last appearance in the competition came in the 2020 edition where he scored just 268 runs in 12 matches at 22.33.

Eoin Morgan (England)

England’s white-ball captain, Eoin Morgan entered the auction at a base price of INR 1.5 crore, but failed to garner a single bid. For someone who guided his team, Kolkata, to the Indian T20 League final last season, it's a sheer disappointment, but judging by his returns with the bat, it does not really look as a surprise.

Last season, the 35-year-old scored just 133 runs in 17 matches at an average of 11.08. This is probably why the teams decided not to get their hands on the England captain. 

Imran Tahir (South Africa)

Veteran spinner Imran Tahir is enjoying life in the Pakistan Super League but he will be gutted after going unsold in the Indian T20 League mega auction. The 42-year-old, who played a solitary game last season, entered with a base price of INR 2 crore and maybe that was the reason why teams decided not to indulge in the bidding process.

Despite being over 40 years of age, the leggie has picked 12 wickets in seven PSL games so far in the campaign and is bowling at an economy of under seven.

Tabraiz Shamsi (South Africa)

Entering at a base price of INR 1 crore, world’s number two T20I bowler Tabraiz Shamsi failed to attract any suitor as teams decided not to gamble on the South African. It is probably down to the fact that the spinner, despite performing decently in the past, hasn’t really enjoyed playing the Indian T20 League.

The 31-year-old has appeared in just five games in the past, picking three wickets at an economy of over nine.

Featured photo: AFP / Arun Sankar

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