IPL 2020: R Ashwin likely to be released, KXIP mulling new captain - Reports
Ravichandran Ashwin’s bad times may turn worse. After being ignored for the first Test match against West Indies, despite being the country’s premiere spinner, Ashwin reportedly is set to lose the captaincy of IPL franchise Kings XI Punjab. KXIP in fact, are not even keen on retaining Ashwin in the squad for IPL 2020.
KXIP are mulling options of trading Ashwin with couple of IPL franchises – Delhi Capitals and Rajasthan Royals, reported the Mirror. A decision is likely to be taken when the KXIP officials meet towards the end of this week.
The off-spinner, who was picked up by Kings XI Punjab for INR 7.8 crores in the auctions ahead of IPL 2018, has been leading the franchise for the last two seasons without much success.
It is, however, unlikely that Ashwin will incur any financial losses but the veteran off-spinner might not retain his captaincy status if traded to Delhi Capitals or Rajasthan Royals.
The Capitals have a set captain in Shreyas Iyer, under whom the franchise qualified for the IPL play-offs for the first time in 7 years – finishing third in IPL 2019 – last year. The Royals on other hand have their own headache of toggling between Ajinkya Rahane and Steve Smith.
Who will captain KXIP?
The report further stated that KXIP are thinking about giving the captaincy reigns to KL Rahul. Ashwin played 28 matches for KXIP and had 25 wickets (overall 125 wickets in 139 IPL games) but his failure to take the side to the play-offs has become his undoing.
The Punjab-based franchise is also on the lookout for a new head coach after the exit of former New Zealand head coach Mike Hesson. They are in talks with the likes of Geroge Bailey and Darren Lehmann.