Source: Official Indian Premier League Twitter handle @IPL


Let me start with the understanding that I have on this highly enterprising format in T20s. There is a template that can define a T20 team. Let me rank the most important factors that a team should cover while constructing a T20 team.

  • Assembling a solid lower middle order who can smash high pace deliveries.


  • A spin basher in the middle order who can hammer spinners in the middle overs and can maintain the tempo from overs 7-13.


  • Possessing quality death bowlers who can nail yorkers, terrorize the batsmen with hard lengths and bouncers.


  • A potent leg spinner who can stem the flow of runs in the middle overs.


  • A left arm orthodox spinner to use as a matchup to right hand batsmen.


  • An off-spinner to take the ball away from the left hand batsmen.


  • A left arm seamer who can swing the new ball at a decent pace in powerplay.
  • Openers who can clear the inner ring in the powerplay to give brisk starts.


  • An anchor who can switch gears effortlessly when needed at #3.

In the IPL, only four overseas players are allowed and that lot must posses the quality the local talents don’t offer the team. Lets take a look at every team and whether they have managed to tick all the aforementioned points post the auction.


Mumbai Indians

The defending champions came into the auction needing to buy a quality overseas seamer to complete their playing 11 and some backups to complete their squad. It wasn’t a surprise that they bagged some quality options and came out of the auction as an all-bases-covered team.

They managed to buy one of the best defensive fast bowlers in world cricket in T20s in Adam Milne who was magnificent with the new ball in the recently concluded BBL besides being a proven customer at the death. MI have great eyes for talents and they grabbed Adam Milne for just 3.20 crore rupees to compliment Trent Boult in the powerplay, which would give them the luxury of holding back Jasprit Bumrah for the death overs. Some other notable names they bought were Nathan Coulter-Nile, Piyush Chawla, Marco Jansen, and Jimmy Neesham.

They might not have an off spinner under their disposal but this squad has all other major things to be the champion team for 3rdconsecutive time.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

Quinton de Kock, Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Krunal Pandya, Rahul Chahar, Adam Milne, Jasprit Bumrah, Trent Boult

The above 11 has solid death bowlers, a quality leg spinner, extraordinary lower middle order, top quality openers, and a spin basher in Ishan Kishan (also potent against pace bowlers). That is just wow.

Delhi Capitals

It was a shocker when they raised their paddle to bid for Steve Smith whom they bought for a mere 2.20 crore rupees but there is little to no use for Smith in that settled DC first choice playing 11.

They managed to buy Vishnu Vinod and Sam Billings, two top quality wicket-keepers with respect to their ceilings in this auction as a backup for Rishabh Pant. They also bought Tom Curran and Umesh Yadav in the pace department and look a well rounded side provided they manage to pick the right set of players to begin with.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

Prithvi Shaw, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, Marcus Stoinis/Sam Billings, Shimron Hetmyer, Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Ishant Sharma/Amit Mishra

The above 11 has a variety of quality spin bowling options, good death bowlers, good openers who can show intent at the top and a decent lower middle order and then there is Rishabh Pant.

Royal Challengers Bangalore

One of the most famous outfits yet one that still yearns for that elusive title, the RCB are an enigma of sorts. They had a massive task at their hands coming into the auction having to fill almost half of their playing 11 let alone their squad. It is fair to say that the RCB were the most disappointing side in this auction. Why? They released Chris Morris prior to the auction, which they shouldn’t have in the first place considering they were fighting for him until the sum of 9.75 crore rupees. An act inexplicable for various reasons.

They bought Glenn Maxwell and Kyle Jamieson for a combined price of 29.25 crores which was again hard to decrypt.

Two huge purchases and big match players- one that routinely disappoints and the other that’s still rising in the graph despite the credibility. Expensive bargain you’d think!

They also bought Dan Christian, Sachin Baby and Mohammad Azharuddeen at the auction table. They certainly lack several things, quality death bowlers maybe except Navdeep Saini to start with and it will be interesting to see how they are going to manage their resources this time around.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

Glenn Maxwell, Devdutt Paddikkal, Joshua Philippe, Virat Kohli, Washington Sundar, AB de Villiers, Kyle Jamieson, Harshal Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammad Siraj, Navdeep Saini

At the moment, they have AB de Villiers in batting and a top quality spin attack in Yuzvendra Chahal and Washington Sundar.

source: Sports Tiger app official twitter @sportstigerapp

Sunrisers Hyderabad

Now this is one of the disciplined sides in the last half a decade of the IPL. They manage their resources like few other franchises in this competition. They already had a settled side coming into this auction and needed some backups. They bought Kedar Jadhav, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Jagadeesha Suchith and that was it for them.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

David Warner, Wriddhiman Saha, Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, Abdul Samad, Jason Holder, Abhishek Sharma, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Sandeep Sharma, T Natarajan

The above 11 lacks variety in their middle order but they have one certain David Warner at the top who is a mad man in this format. They also have Kane Williamson who is playing in the god mode at the moment. Their lower middle order is not bad either with 2 genuine six hitters in Abdul Samad and Jason Holder.

They have the champion in Rashid Khan in the spin department to go with proven death bowling options in Bhuvneshwar Kumar and T Natarajan. Jason Holder and Sandeep Sharma provide stability with new ball in powerplay.

Punjab Kings

The newly rebranded side have certainly assembled a quality squad for one more time and it will come down to the resource management. They bought Fabian Allen for just 75 lakhs which qualifies as a steal. The bloke can whack a white ball like few can and is an excellent fielder of his own bowing, someone who chips in with a few handy overs.

They bought the best pace bowler at the auction in Jhye Richardson for a whopping 14 crore rupees. Some other notable names in the Punjab set-up were Moises Henriques, Shah Rukh Khan and Dawid Malan.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

KL Rahul, Chris Gayle, Mayank Agarwal, Nicholas Pooran, Sarfaraz Khan, Deepak Hooda, Fabian Allen, Jhye Richardson, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammad Shami, Arshdeep Singh

The above 11 has almost all bases covered with solid lower middle order, decent death bowling options, A class openers and then Nicholas Pooran.

Kolkata Knight Riders

KKR needed mere backups coming into this auction and they bought one each for Sunil Narine and Andre Russell. They managed to buy Shakib Al Hasan for 3.20 crores and Ben Cutting for just 75 lakhs. Some other notable names they bought in this auction were Harbhajan Singh and Karun Nair.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

Shubman Gill, Rahul Tripathi, Nitish Rana, Eoin Morgan, Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik, Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Varun Chakravarthy, Prasidh Krishna

Their lower middle order is one of the best in the tournament with Dinesh Karthik and Andre Russell. They have good variety in the batting order as well to go with 2 quality defensive spinners. Their death bowling remains a concern and there is also a possibility that they might consider playing Lockie Ferguson in place of Sunil Narine straight away.

Chennai Super Kings

This was Chennai Super Kings’s best auction by a large margin in the last three years or so. They bought two decent to good off spinners who are also good ball strikers in Moeen Ali and Krishanappa Gowtham. They also bought Cheteshwar Pujara for some reason and Tamil Nadu opener Hari Nishanth.

It is very difficult to predict a XI for CSK with the kind of squad they have assembled this time around.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

Faf du Plessis, Moeen Ali, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni, Sam Curran, Ravindra Jadeja, Krishnappa Gowtham, Dwayne Bravo, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur/Karn Sharma

There is a massive variety in this lineup and it will be enthralling to see how the master magician in MS Dhoni manage these resources.

Rajasthan Royals

They have built a squad that on paper qualifies as one of the title contenders fair and square. They went all out for Chris Morris and bought him for a record 16.25 crore rupees and that pick made their team a dangerous one. They also bought Shivam Dube to slot him in the middle order. Mustafizur Rahman, Liam Livingstone and Akash Singh were the other notable names bought.

My XI when all their first choice players are available

Ben Stokes, Manan Vohra, Sanju Samson, Mahipal Lomror/Shivam Dube, Jos Buttler, Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Chris Morris, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Karthik Tyagi

Now, that line up has unbelievable batting and bowling depth and they can literally toy with the batting order as well by making Jos Buttler to open and play both Shivam Dube and Mahipal Lomror in the middle order.

Their bowling attack looks rock solid and they have all types of spinners to go with A class death bowling options along with two good leg-spinners. There is absolutely not much to complain about this side, don’t you think?


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