After prolonged speculation, instead of a maximum of 32 players that could have been retained by the eight existing Indian Premier League (IPL) teams, only 12 actually were.
A glance at the list of the retained players tells you that the basic purpose behind introducing the retention clause has been served.
The two teams who were adamant on being allowed to retain “at least four if not six” players ahead of the player auction before the fourth edition - Mumbai Indians (MI) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) - have ended up making the most use of it.
Not only did the two finalists for last year continue their association with Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Sachin Tendulkar - the two players around whom their respective team's brand revolves, MI and CSK were the only two teams to have made optimum use of the retention quota.
As expected, MI held on to Kieron Pollard, Lasith Malinga and Harbhajan Singh besides Tendulkar, CSK also kept hold of Suresh Raina - who was being desperately chased by new entrants Sahara Pune Warriors.
While Rajasthan Royals were lucky to hang on to the two Australian Shanes - Warne and Watson - it was learnt that when they approached Yusuf Pathan, he asked them to settle his dues first. So was the case with umpteen players who were approached by KXIP.
Though it might come as a surprise to many, Royal Challengers Bangalore's decision to overlook Ross Taylor, Dale Steyn and Anil Kumble didn't shock the IPL fraternity.
“Taylor's and Steyn's names doing the rounds were nothing but eyewash. And probably the team felt the money involved would have been too high to stick to Kumble,” an IPL insider said. “And anyway, no other team is likely to bid for Kumble in the auction.”
Similarly, Kolkata Knight Riders and Deccan Chargers decided to stay away from retaining Chris Gayle and Rohit Sharma, respectively, since it was likely that they could get them for “a lesser value” during the auction.