Robin Uthappa will be finding himself in the auction pool this season after being released by Kolkata Knight Riders ahead of the 19th December IPL Auction in Kolkata. Uthappa was bought by the Knight Riders in 2014 and won the Orange cap that season, as he helped his side to win the title. In the 2018 Auction, the franchise had bought him back through the right-to-match card for a handsome price of 6.4 crores. However, the right-hander was not at his best in IPL 2019, as he managed to score just one half-century for his 282 runs in 11 innings at an average of 31.33.
The auction for the Indian Premier League 2020 edition will be held on December 19, 2019, and will be played in the months of April and May at various venues across India. All the eight teams have already come out with their list of players whom they have retained, released or traded to other teams.
KKR has already made their intentions clear for the upcoming season by releasing its foreign players. The likes of Chris Lynn, Carlos Brathwaite, Joe Denly, and South Africa pacer Anrich Nortje are such examples. From the Indian contingent, Piyush Chawla and Robin Uthappa are the biggest casualties.
With Uthappa back in the pool, we look at teams who could buy the wicketkeeper-batsman for the upcoming edition.
With former India coach Anil Kumble taking the reigns of the team this season, the Punjab side let go of several international stars for the upcoming season, The likes of David Miller, Moises Henriques, Sam Curran and Andrew Tye were let go by the franchise. Now with many slots opened up to bring in fresh recruits, Kumble could cash in his Karnataka connection with Robin Uthappa to rope in the wicketkeeper-batsman for making the middle order more stable, something which has been a problem for the side for all these years.
The Virat Kohli-led side has always looked strong on paper, but their performances on the field have been really poor. Apart from the skipper and AB de Villiers, no other players have contributed when the team needed the most especially during the middle overs. Uthappa, who has previously played for the side in the 2009 and 2010 IPL seasons, could either play the perfect anchor role according to the situation or attack when needed.
After trading Ajinkya Rahane to the Delhi Capitals, the Rajasthan Royals will need an opener who can support Jos Buttler at the top as well as provide the team with more experience and leadership qualities. Uthappa looks to be the perfect candidate, having opened the innings for KKR previously. With the middle order already stacked up with great talent, the opening spot is the likely option for the right-hander.