Chennai Super Kings (CSK), the winners of their fifth IPL title, brought an end to the 16th edition. In the final match, the MS Dhoni team beat Gujarat Titans to win the IPL title with the second-most titles. Royal Challengers Bangalore, who were eliminated from the tournament at the group stage, had another trophyless year.
RCB was expected to reach the knockout round again after three consecutive playoff qualification. The team began well with a convincing win over Mumbai Indians. Two defeats in two subsequent games halted the momentum. It was left to the final group stage game to determine qualification. RCB’s fans and the team were disappointed that it did not work out.
The RCB failed this season for a number of reasons, but one was the ever-present problem- their over-reliance on a select few players. Earlier, it was Virat, Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers. This time, it’s Faf, Virat, Glenn Maxwell and Mohammed Siraj.
RCB’s fragile middle order, coupled with an instabile bowling attack, cost them a number of games. As with every season, the time has come to rebuild the team for the sake of the franchise and the fans. RCB will be able to build a strong squad for the IPL 2024 Auction, even though a mega-auction is out of reach. They will have to let some players go before then.
The four players RCB could release before the IPL 2024 auction.
Dineshkarthik enjoyed a successful IPL in 2022, after he had been purchased by RCB for INR 5.5 CR at the mega-auction. The wicketkeeper batsman scored 330 runs with an average of 55, and a strike rate 183.33. Karthik, however, failed to score even half the runs that he did in the previous IPL edition. The RCB wicketkeeper scored 140 runs in IPL 2023 at an average of 11:67.
RCB may consider releasing Karthik if Anuj Rawat is doing well behind the wicket and has been a good performer off the blocks. Instead, they can bring in a young wicketkeeper to replace Rawat when needed.
Harshal patel has also seen his form plummet, just like Dineshkarthik. Patel, who ended IPL 2021 with a record-breaking 32 wickets as the top wicket-taker, managed only 19 and fourteen wickets in the two subsequent editions. Patel, who was at least economical during IPL2022, failed to control runs in IPL2023. The pacer also receives a large amount of money (INR 10,75 Crore). RCB can use the money saved by releasing Patel to sign up good overseas bowlers and domestic talent.
Shahbaz Ahmed is with RCB since a few seasons and has delivered decent performances. He has not been able to convince the management he is capable of finishing the job. Ahmed played in RCB’s playing XI regularly in IPL 2022, but only ten matches in IPL 2033. RCB might consider freeing a slot for him, as he earns INR 2.4 lakh.
Finn Allen , a New Zealander, has been playing for RCB since quite some time but he still hasn’t made his IPL debut. The swashbuckling batsman is unable to get a place because Faf duPlessis and Glenn Maxwell occupy the two overseas spots. Also, fitting Allen into the top order of the RCB team would be a difficult task. RCB could benefit from letting him go and bringing in a local bowler.