Ganguly on Sarfaraz's DC exit as Gambhir, Dhoni scamper to sign him for IPL 2024 | Cricket - Hindustan Times

Sourav Ganguly reveals why Delhi Capitals released Sarfaraz Khan as Gambhir, Dhoni scamper to sign him for IPL 2024

Mar 02, 2024 06:06 AM IST

Sourav Ganguly explained Delhi Capitals' decision to release Sarfaraz Khan ahead of IPL 2024 auction.

Sarfaraz Khan, who enjoyed a dream debut for India in the 3rd against England at Rajkot, was one of the 11 players released by Delhi Capitals ahead of the IPL 2024 auction. Sarfaraz, who spent four years at Royal Challengers Bangalore under Virat Kohli, before moving to Punjab Kings for three years and then eventually to the Capitals. But somehow, despite setting the India domestic cricket circuit on fire with truckloads of runs, Sarfaraz hasn't been able to replicate the same success in the IPL.

Sourav Ganguly explains Sarfaraz Khan's DC release. (Getty-Screengrab)
Sourav Ganguly explains Sarfaraz Khan's DC release. (Getty-Screengrab)

2019 was Sarfaraz's best IPL season where he scored 180 runs from 8 matches. And in all fairness, it's not entirely his fault because he has hardly played games. When he joined DC in IPL 2022, in two seasons he has represented the franchise in 10 games scoring 144 runs. Why is that? According to DC's director of cricket Sourav Ganguly, Sarfaraz is primarily a traditional red-ball player whose hasn't quite found his feet in T20 cricket yet. This was a significant factor contributing to his release.

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"I think he is more of a five-day player. His game is suited for that. T20 is a different format and the amount of runs he has scored in domestic cricket - in Ranji Trophy and other First-class games is phenomenal. And as they say, if you score runs, it doesn't go waste," Ganguly told RevSportz.

Sarfaraz on CSK, KKR's radar

When the IPL 2024 auction took place in December, Sarfaraz – base price of 20 lakh –surprisingly went unsold. But if reports are to be believed, his fortunes have changed since smashing those twin fifties against England. In the first innings, Sarfaraz produced a blitzkrieg, smashing a 48-ball half-century and partnering Ravindra Jadeja in a 77-run stand before he was unfortunately run out for 62. He followed it up with another quickfire fifty in the second as India set England a daunting 557-run target.

Also Read: Gautam Gambhir vs MS Dhoni as KKR and CSK in race to sign Sarfaraz Khan for IPL 2024 after stellar India debut

But Anandabazar Patrika last month reported that as many as three franchises are keen to get the 27-year-old on board. In fact, Gambhir, a mentor with Kolkata Knight Riders, is trying to convince the team management that Sarfaraz could be an asset for the team, but he and KKR are likely to receive stiff competition as Chennai Super Kings are in the fray too. Another team that has shown interest in Sarfaraz is RCB, his former IPL franchise, but their decision isn't as concrete as KKR and CSK.

Since Sarfaraz was released by DC, he did not qualify to be part of the trading window. If Sarfaraz's deal comes through, it will likely be a last-minute signing.

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