Reports have said that the Royal Challengers Bangalore are currently eyeing batter Manish Pandey in preparation for IPL 2022 mega auction and are looking to install him as the team's captain, replacing Virat Kohli.
Why Pandey is a good captaincy candidate
Pandey is not just a random name as he was an important player for the team back in 2009. The batter is the first in the history of IPL to have scored a century. With the record-breaking score, he led the team to the finals in the same year. Since then, he has played for several other teams, including Kolkata Knight Riders, Pune Warriors India, and Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Pandey also has some captaining experiences with the Karnataka team in domestic tournaments like the Ranji Trophy and Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy. His long list of experiences makes him the most likely candidate to lead RCB in IPL 2022, as Kohli previously announced that he gave up the team's skipper position following the finale of IPL 2021.
Saying Pandey is a prominent player is an understatement. So far, he has played 154 IPL matches and scored 3560 runs at an average of 30.68. While it might be strange to see Kohli not being a captain of a team, Pandey's candidacy did not come out of thin air. Besides, Kohli not being a captain will soon be a usual sight as recently he was removed from ODI captaincy and replaced by Rohit Sharma.
Other teams' expected captains
1. Mumbai Indians – Rohit Sharma
The Mumbai Indians have retained the IPL's most successful captain, Rohit Sharma, ahead of the upcoming mega auction. It is expected that the team will preserve the throne for him as under the player's lead, the Indians managed to in five IPL titles in eight years.
2. Chennai Super Kings – MS Dhoni
Four-times IPL winner Chennai Super Kings has retained Mahendra Singh Dhoni for the coming season for the whooping price of ₹12 crores. Dhoni is expected to lead the team for another year.
3. Delhi Capitals – Rishabh Pant
Following his success last season, the Delhi Capitals have named young stumper batsman Rishabh Pant captain for another year. He replaced Shreyas Iyer, who was not retained by the Capitals.
4. Sunrisers Hyderabad – Kane Williamson
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson is continuing his role as the skipper of Sunrisers Hyderabad for the fifteenth season of the IPL. He was retained by the team for ₹14 crores. Williamson replaced David Warner, who was sacked earlier by the team.
5. Rajasthan Royals – Sanju Samson
Sanju Samson was retained for ₹14 crores by the Rajashtan Royals, who have announced that they decided to give the young player another year as the leader of the team. He was first named captain in the 2021 season, replacing Steve Smith.
6. Punjab Kings – Mayank Agarwal
According to reports, Mohali based Punjab Kings is likely to acquire Mayank Agarwal in the upcoming auction and install him as the team's captain in the place of KL Rahul, who recently said goodbye in a bid to explore more opportunities.