The mega-auction for the upcoming 2022 season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is scheduled to take place next month. Prior to the bidding process, many franchises are focusing their attention on certain players for whom they would put a lot of emphasis in the auction. One such cricketer is Shreyas Iyer, who was recently released by Delhi Capitals (DC).

DC went with captain Rishabh Pant, opening batter Prithvi Shaw, spinner Axar Patel and overseas pacer Anrich Nortje. Notably, Pant was named the captain for the Capitals after Iyer dislocated his shoulder and was ruled out of the last season in March. The Mumbaikar returned for the second leg and played under Pant in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

It was reported that Iyer opted to opted to head to the player auction because he wanted to lead the side, and DC wasn’t ready to give up on Pant. There is no doubt that Iyer has superior captaincy skills, and in the auction, many teams looking for captains or players who could become future leaders are expected to target Iyer.

A report in India Today has claimed that Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Punjab Kings (PBKS) can target Iyer in the upcoming auction. Notably, RCB will be looking for a player to lead the team after Virat Kohli had announced last year that the 2021 season would be his final year of captaincy.

Similarly, Punjab will also be looking for a decent player who could captain the side after deciding not to retain KL Rahul for IPL 2022. Not to mention, PBKS have only retained two players ahead of the auction in the form of opener Mayank Agarwal and Arshdeep Singh.

In the case of Knight Riders, they would also be looking for someone who has experience leading an IPL side, especially after KKR released some senior players like Eoin Morgan and Dinesh Karthik. The Kolkata-based franchise has retained four cricketers in the form of Andre Russell, Varun Chakravarthy, Venkatesh Iyer and Sunil Narine.

“Post Virat Kohli quitting the RCB captaincy, RCB are really interested in having Iyer as their next captain. Expect them to bid aggressively for the Mumbaikar in next month’s auction in Bangalore. The Kolkata Knight Riders and Punjab Kings are also expected to eye him in the auction,” said the source.

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