Delhi Daredevils have retained Shreyas Iyer, Chris Morris and Rishabh Pant for IPL 2018 at the player retention event in Mumbai. With the player retention deadline of 5 PM, the two-time IPL semifinalists have opted to retain three players from their previous squads.
By retaining youngsters Pant and Iyer, Delhi have maintained their focus on banking on youth to get them over the line and push them into the final for the very first time. Iyer, 23, was bought by Delhi prior to IPL 2015 for Rs 2.6 crore and has been part of the side for three seasons. Last season he scored 338 runs in 12 matches while Pant, 20, scored 366 runs from 14 matches. The duo provide the requisite strong start to a team and their strike rates of 139.09 and 165.61 puts that point across.
In South African Morris, Delhi have opted to retain a player who has the ability to change a game dramatically – with the bat and the ball. Last season he scored 154 runs in nine matches at a strike rate of 163.82. In a format bereft with bowlers going for big runs, Morris has remained largely economical with an economy rate of 7.74 last season while picking up 12 wickets.
Prior to the IPL auction on January 27 and 28, player retention acts as the first step towards formation of the squad. IPL Governing Council allowed teams to retain a maximum of five players from their previous squads as a combination of player retention and Right-to-Match which can be exercised during the IPL auction. A team could retain a maximum of three players or use the right-to-match card a maximum of three times. With Delhi opting for three retentions, they can use the RTM card twice at the IPL auction.
From a collective purse of Rs 80 crores in salaries, Delhi have spent Rs 33 crore by retaining the three players. By retaining three players, first one going for Rs 15 crore, second for Rs 11 crore and third for Rs 7 crore, Daredevils have been left with Rs 47 crore to spend on during the IPL auction in Bengaluru.