India veteran Yuvraj Singh, all-rounder Axar Patel and Australia opener Aaron Finch were among 11 players released by Indian Premier League franchise Kings XI Punjab.
Yuvraj had a miserable outing last season, managing just 65 runs in eight games at an average of 10.83. The hard-hitting Finch, who played in the middle-order also had a season to forget, managing to get just 134 runs in 10 games. Axar Patel’s axe came as a surprise as he has been one of the regulars of the franchise over the last few years. The 24-year-old picked up just three wickets in nine games.
Some of the others whom Punjab released were Ben Dwarshius, Mohit Sharma, Brainder Sran, Manoj Tiwari, Manzoor Dar, Akshdeep Nath and Mayank Dagar.
Nine players have been retained by the 2014 finalists. That list includes skipper Ravichandran Ashwin, KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Ankit Rajpoot, Chris Gayle, David Miller, Andrew Tye along with Afghanistan spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman. Punjab had traded Australia all-rounder Marcus Stoinis for Royal Challengers Bangalore batsman Mandeep Singh.
Recently, New Zealand’s Mike Hesson was announced as Punjab’s new coach. Despite getting off to a good start, Punjab collapsed in the round-robin stages last season to finish seventh in the table.
RETAINED: KL Rahul, Chris Gayle, Andrew Tye, Mayank Agarwal, Ankit Rajpoot, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Karun Nair, David Miller and Ravichandran Ashwin
RELEASED: Aaron Finch, Axar Patel, Mohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, Barinder Sran, Ben Dwarshuis, Manoj Tiwary, Akshdeep Nath, Pardeep Sahu, Mayank Dagar and Manzoor Dar
TRADED: Marcus Stoinis for Mandeep Singh