Mumbai Indians (MI) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) are two blockbuster franchises in the Indian Premier League (IPL). However, MI, who have won the title five times, have managed to emerge as one of the most successful teams in the cash-rich league. On the other hand, RCB are yet to win their maiden trophy despite featuring in the tournament since its inception in 2008.
Preparations for the 17th edition of IPL are in full swing as the mini-auction will be held after a few days. MI need to rectify their mistakes in the past couple of seasons, while RCB need to end their title drought. Along with 8 other teams, RCB and MI have also announced their final squad ahead of the December 19 auction in Dubai.
Both franchises have released a bunch of players and will fill the positions with efficient players. Notably, RCB did a favour to MI in acquiring Hardik Pandya from Gujarat Titans (GT). They bought all-rounder Cameron Green for a whopping sum of 17.5 crores. In this article, let's take a look at 5 RCB-released players whom MI might target in the IPL 2024 mini-auction.
5. Michael Bracewell
The New Zealand all-rounder made his IPL debut with RCB in the 2023 season. Bracewell was bought with high expectations, but he failed to prove his mettle, forcing the Bangalore-based franchise to release him. Last season, he managed to score only 58 runs and six wickets in five matches. However, MI may target the 32-year-old in the upcoming auction as he can provide support to veteran spinner Piyush Chawla and contribute with his batting prowess playing in the lower-middle order.
4. Wanindu Hasaranga
Wanindu Hasaranga is currently one of the top spinners in the world in the shorter format of the game. He had a great outing with RCB in IPL 2022 but failed to perform well in the subsequent edition. The Sri Lankan all-rounder is expected to fetch a huge sum in the upcoming auction and MI will be one of the franchises to go for him. Piyush Chawla is the only experienced spinner in the team. Hence, bringing Hasaranga into the lineup will strengthen their spin unit.
3. Josh Hazlewood
With the release of Jofra Archer, MI will need someone like Josh Hazlewood to accompany Jasprit Bumrah in the pace attack. A bidding war is expected on the auction day for the Australian fast bowler and MI may also join the fun. The 32-year-old has picked up 35 wickets in 27 matches at an economy of 8.06 in his IPL career.
2. David Willey
MI have released some overseas fast-bowling options like Chris Jordan, Riley Meredith and Jhye Richardson. David Willey, who recently retired from international cricket, can easily fill one of their vacancies. The southpaw can also contribute effectively with the bat playing in the lower-middle order. The English all-rounder has played 11 IPL matches and has claimed six wickets and 53 runs.
1. Harshal Patel
Harshal Patel had a sensational tournament in 2021 in which he won the Player of the Tournament for taking 32 wickets. However, in the subsequent two seasons, he did not perform well and RCB decided to release him. His cutters and use of variations can easily trouble the batters. MI can invest in Harshal as he can fill the void of released foreign pacers with an Indian player.