Though they weren't allowed to play in the 2018 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Australian batting duo of Steve Smith and David Warner are all set to appear in the 2019 edition as they have been retained by their respective franchises. In their absence, Ajinkya Rahane took up the reins of captaincy for the Royals while New Zealander Kane Williamson led the Sunrisers who finished runners-up in 2018.
Apart from Smith, Royals also retained their England stars in Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and New Zealand´s Ish Sodhi. Smith and Warner, former captain and vice-captain of Australia, are now serving a year-long ban over their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa earlier this year. The likes of Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson, Krishnappa Gowtham, Jofra Archer and Shreyas Gopal are among those who have been retained along with skipper Ajinkya Rahane.
Players were told on Thursday they must also make themselves available for that camp, well before the IPL final on 19 May.More news: David Pearson, NASCAR Hall of Famer with 105 wins, dies at 83
Chris Woakes, Alex Hales, Jason Roy and Tom Curran are among a number of England players to have been released from franchises.
Besides this, the South African bowler Dane Paterson, chinaman Zahir Khan and Sri Lankan pacer Dushmantha Chameera have also been released.
Speaking of the released players, Manoj Badale said, "After analysing our performances of 2018 and plotting our vision for the season ahead, we have made a decision to release a few players from our squad". Jaydev Unadkat, who was bought for a whopping 11.5 crore by the franchise in the last auctions is the biggest casualty as he has been released by the team. "However, there are always areas that can be strengthened, which is what we will be looking to do in the auction", he added.More news: PM denies DUP deal in peril
Both Smith and Warner have been successful captains in the IPL.
"The results in the previous season have been impressive and that is why we have decided not to disturb the balance of the squad", Zubin Bharucha, head of cricket at the franchise, said.
On Unadkat's release, Bharucha said: "JD was brilliant to have as part of the Royals last season and it was a really hard decision to release him".More news: Bears' Mitchell Trubisky selected NFC offensive player of the week
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