Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Rajasthan Royals are not leaving any stone unturned as they have already started their preparations ahead of the auction for the next year’s competition which will take place on December 19 in Kolkata. After claiming their first and only IPL title in 2008, they have not managed to lay their hands on the trophy. Since that victory, the Royals have not managed to reach the final even once. In order to change their fortunes, they are doing everything they can.
According to a leading Indian media daily in a report on Tuesday, the Royals have already released as many as 11 players ahead of the much-anticipated auction. Left-arm pacer Jaydev Unadkat leads the list of the released players by the franchise. Other players that have been released are Stuart Binny and Sudhesan Midhun. Aryaman Birla, Ish Sodhi, Ashton Turner, Liam Livingstone, Oshane Thomas, Prashant Chopra, Rahul Tripathi, Shubham Ranjane. The Royals have also let their former skipper Ajinkya Rahane join Delhi Capitals as a part of a trade deal. In return, they have secured the services of Mayank Markande and Rahul Tewatia.
Fast-bowler Dhawan Kulkarni and batsman Krishnappa Gowtham have been traded to Mumbai Indians and Kings XI Punjab respectively. Ankit Rajpoot has joined the Rajasthan-based outfit from Kings XI Punjab. The Royals already boast the likes of Steve Smith, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Jofra Archer and will be looking to further bolster the side in the auction.
The Royals have called up a number of players for their trials in Nagpur ahead of the auction. They recently invited Sussex fast bowler George Garton for trials. The franchise have also sent their invitation to Afghanistan’s young chinaman spinner Noor Ahmad Lakanwal along with their national team players Naveen ul Haq and Rahmanullah Gurbaz.
Noor Ahmad Lakanwal, who is just 14-year old, impressed everyone in the ACC U19 Asia Cup. One of his best performances came against India when he picked up 4 wickets for just 14 runs. On the other hand, Naveen and Rahmanullah have already played white-ball cricket for Afghanistan. Afghanistan journalist M.Ibrahim Momand revealed the news on Twitter by writing: “Afghan China-man @LakanwalNoor along with @RGurbaz_21, KarimJanat & @imnaveenulhaq are reportedly to feature in a trial match for @rajasthanroyals ahead of @IPL Auction2020.”