The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) will have an entirely new look from next season, with Virat Kohli stepping down as the captain after nearly a decade at the helm. Despite reaching multiple playoffs and one final in 2016, they never managed to go all the way and the disappointment of not winning the trophy as a captain, should be an added incentive for the 32-year-old to try harder next year.
With Lucknow and Ahmedabad franchises confirming their status in the Indian Premier League for next season, the world of IPL is stepping in a new direction altogether. More matches, more revenue, more drama, and perhaps tougher now lay hands on the trophy.
Bangalore have a pool of options to look at in the auction for the captaincy next year. They can go after some of the experienced campaigners like Eoin Morgan, Aaron Finch, Quinton de Kock, or potentially an Indian captain, who will cost a fortune. They will be planning things for the long run, and in the coming 3-year cycle, they’ll be more adamant than ever to get the title.
Here are three players Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) could target in the auction for the leadership role.
1. KL Rahul
A Bangalore homecoming pretty much is on cards with KL Rahul. One of the most effervescent and outrageous batters of the current times, KL Rahul, as reported by Cricbuzz, is not keen on continuing with Punjab Kings and wants a new franchise. He made his mark with the Punjab Kings over the last few seasons, scoring 590+ runs in each edition with them, also winning an Orange Cap.
He can be a great choice for Bangalore’s captaincy position, as he belongs to the city, and can rally the fans around instantly. It was with this very franchise he made a mark in 2016, when he scored 397 runs in 2016, helping RCB finish as finalists. His career as an international cricketer escalated from there, and he went for a huge amount in the 2018 auction.
Do not be surprised if teams break the banks and pull each other’s hairs to win his services, his stock value is that high right now. There is a chance for one of the new teams to draft him before the auction if he eventually quits Punjab, but it is likely that Bangalore will go all guns blazing for the 29-year-old.
2. Shreyas Iyer
Another proven captaincy material, another man who will be high up on the radar for the two new franchises, if Shreyas Iyer makes it to the auction, there will be chaos. Having taken up captaincy midway through an IPL season from Gautam Gambhir, Iyer hasn’t looked back ever since and led his side to their maiden IPL final in 2020.
He is tactically astute, utilizes his resources pretty efficiently and although he made some mistakes with his field-setting over the years, he keeps learning and growing, a facet you cannot put a price tag on. He turns 27 in the first week of December, which means he has plenty of time to offer to the franchise.
Having an Indian captain of his age in the side can help Bangalore lay plans for over 5 years or more. It is one area where they haven’t been impressive, to plan well in the long run, but winning a bid for this Mumbai cricketer will be one step in the right direction.
3. David Warner
He has already announced that he’ll be entering the auction, making David Warner a hotcake among foreign cricketers in the tournament. A man who makes a great case to be the greatest foreign cricketer in IPL history, Warner comes in with an illustrious record, and to emphasize him as a proven champion addition would be an understatement.
3 orange caps, 6 seasons of 500+ runs, 1 title-winning campaign in 2016 as a captain – He ticks every box the Royal Challengers Bangalore can think of. He had a disappointing fallout with his beloved franchise Sunrisers Hyderabad and is looking for a new challenge. To partner alongside Virat Kohli in this project is something he wouldn’t mind, and might even fancy more than the others.
The Aussie opener, however, might not be entering the auction if he frees himself from SRH. The two new teams will be an equally brilliant project to take up, and those franchises will try their best to wind him up with them.