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IPL 2022: Hardik Pandya likely to captain Ahmedbad franchise, Ashish Nehra set to be head coach

IPL 2022: Former Mumbai Indians all-rounder Hardik Pandya is likely to lead the new franchise from Ahmedabad in the upcoming season. Hardik was not retained by the 5-time champions ahead of the mega auction.

Hardik Pandya likely to lead Ahmedabad franchise in IPL 2022 (Reuters Photo)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Hardik Pandya was not retained by Mumbai Indians for IPl 2022
  • Hardik is likely to lead Ahmedabad, which will have one of the two new franchises
  • Ashish Nehra is set to come on board as the team’s head coach

India all-rounder Hardik Pandya is likely to be appointed as the captain of the new Ahmedabad franchise for Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022, sources have said. The former Mumbai Indians cricketer, who hails from Baroda in Gujarat will lead for the first time in the popular T20 league which will have a team from his state for the first time in its history.

Meanwhile, former India fast bowler Ashish Nehra is likely to come on board as the head coach of the Ahmedabad franchise. Nehra, who retired from international cricket in 2017, had previously worked with Royal Challengers Bangalore as their assistant coach.

Hardik Pandya was not retained by Mumbai Indians as the 5-time IPL champions went ahead with Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Suryakumar Yadav and Kieron Pollard as their 4 picks for retention ahead of the much-anticipated IPL 2022 auction.

The Ahmedabad team will be owned by CVC Capital.CVC was one of two companies to have won bids to own the two new franchises that will play in the IPL from next season. While its bid of Rs 5625 crore helped them win the Ahmedabad franchise, the RPSG Group won the Lucknow franchise with a bid of Rs 7090 crore.

There was a delay in CVC getting the Letter of Intent from the BCCI to won the Ahmedabad franchise after the company had come under the scanner over its alleged ties to betting companies after it won the Ahmedabad franchise in the auction that was held in Dubai in October.

Meanwhile, the Ahmedabad franchise is also looking to sign Afghanistan all-rounder Rashid Khan and former Mumbai Indians wicketkeeper-batter Ishan Kishan.

Both the two new teams have been given time until the end of the month by the BCCI to pick 3 players of its choice before the auction. Notably, all 8 existing franchises retained up to 4 players each in December 2021.

Hardik has never led an IPL team in the past. However, the all-rounder had been an integral member of Mumbai Indians’ success over the years.

Hardik has played a total of 92 matches, hitting 1476 runs at a staggering strike rate of 153.91. He has picked up 42 wickets as well.

Hardik has not played for India since the T20 World Cup in the UAE last year. The all-rounder is recovering from persistent back issues as he missed the home series against New Zealand and the tour of South Africa.

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