Senior Indian batsman Manish Pandey has been a constant presence in the IPL and has played in all 15 seasons so far.
Pandey, the first-ever Indian centurion in the IPL and a 2014 IPL winner with KKR, however, hasn’t had the best of the seasons in recent years which saw him being dropped from the XI in 2021 by SRH and in 2022 by LSG.
Lucknow bought Pandey in the mega-auction last year for 4.6 crore banking on his experience in Indian conditions and that he’s had international experience too with the Indian team. However, the Karnataka batsman managed only 88 runs in 6 innings at a poor strike rate of 110 and was dropped. LSG has then also released Pandey.
Despite his dismal IPL 2022 season, Manish Pandey remains one of the most experienced Indian players to be auctioned at the upcoming IPL 2023 mini-auction, and his record in the IPL – 3648 at an average of 30 with 21 fifties and 1 century – is all but certain to get him bids from the franchises, some of those could even target Pandey for their middle-order slot.
Here are 3 teams that can buy Manish Pandey in the IPL 2023 mini-auction:
The defending champions Gujarat Titans had a dominating IPL 2022 season, and have made few releases, which again shows how much satisfied they are with their squad. However, if the Titans had a cause for worry last season, then it was for one middle-order slot.
The Ashish Nehra coached side chopped, changed, and rotated the likes of Vijay Shankar, Matthew Wade, Sai Sudharsan, and Abhinav Manohar in the middle-order and throughout the season, none of them could really cement their spot.
In that alternative, what Gujarat Titans might try is Manish Pandey, a senior Indian batter who might bring more stability at the number 3 position that the overseas or younger options GT tried last season. Pandey could well be that middle-order fix that allows Pandya to come in at number 4 and not number 3.
Warner, Shaw, Mitch Marsh, (?), Pant, Rovman Powell, Lalit Yadav, Axar Patel. Fit Manish Pandey into this team and it could well be the last piece of the puzzle that the Delhi Capitals need to reach the playoffs after missing it by 2 points last season.
The likes of Tim Seifert and Mandeep Singh couldn’t find the proper gear to bat in a power-packed DC line-up and are both released.
The presence of a trustful, anchor-role batsman such as Manish Pandey will embolden the other hitters in the DC batting order to play more aggressively.
Chennai Super Kings
CSK’s middle-order batsman Robin Uthappa has retired from the IPL, and all-rounder Moeen Ali has been in terrible form with the bat in recent months. So there’s a middle-order position problem for CSK that they will have to make a move on in the upcoming auction.
They will have to get a middle-order batsman who can bat well on spin-friendly pitches as CSK are coming back to the spin-friendly Chepauk next season where they will play half of their league games. Winning as many matches at home as possible is crucial for any franchise to progress in the top 4. And CSK knows it.
The known fact that Manish Pandey is an excellent player of spin and has spent his life piling up huge runs in domestic cricket in India could push CSK to bid for Pandey.