Nine West Indians retained for next season's IPL
MUMBAI, India (CMC):
Nine West Indies Twenty20 stars that have enriched the lucrative Indian Premier League have been retained for next season, organisers announced yesterday.
Superstars Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo, as well as current West Indies T20 captain Carlos Brathwaite, headline the list, which includes 44 overseas players of the total 140 kept when the window for the eight franchises to retain players for the coming season closed on December 15.
Current West Indies Test and one-day international captain Jason Holder and fellow fast-bowler Jerome Taylor are the only two West Indians that were part of the IPL last season that were cut, being dropped by Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians respectively.
Gayle and leg-spin bowler Samuel Badree were retained by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), which lost the final this year against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Gayle and Badree are two of 20 that RCB have retained at a cost of close to US$9 million and will help to form the same core of players that played last season.
Bravo and his namesake Dwayne Smith have been kept by Gujarat Lions, which retained 16 players at just over US$8.5 million, but also off-loaded eight players, including star South Africa fast-bowler Dale Steyn.
Brathwaite regained his place with the Daredevils, as one of five overseas players retained among the 18 at a cost of close to US$7.5 million.
Though they may have parted company with Holder, the Knight Riders have, however, held on to spinner Sunil Narine and all-rounder Andre Russell, as two of four overseas players retained as part of a group 14, costing a little over US$7.7 million.
The Indians have kept big-hitting Kieron Pollard and compatriot Lendl Simmons among six overseas players that help to form the 20, which the franchise retained at a hefty price tag of just over US$9 million - the highest of the franchises.
RCB and the Indians have retained 20 - the highest number of players - and KKR have retained the least number with 14.
Rising Pune Superstars released 11 players - the highest number - but Kings XI Punjab still have the biggest cap space of close to US$3.9 million to spend on bringing new playing resources to the franchise.