Sunrisers Hyderabad have stated that the main reason behind opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan being traded to Delhi Daredevils was that he was “unsettled” over the amount the franchise paid him at last year’s IPL auction.
Every franchise is allowed four retentions before a player auction, but Sunrisers only retained David Warner and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Dhawan, along with their lead bowler, the lespinner Rashid Khan, was retained by Sunrisers through the right-to-match card. Sunrisers paid INR 5.2 crore (approx USD 820,000 at the time) to buy Dhawan back. But, as reported earlier, Dhawan was not happy.
Dhawan was the most expensive player at Sunrisers until two years back, after they had retained him for INR 12.5 crore (approx $1.865 million at the time). However, with Warner’s emergence as the key player, and the growing stature of Kane Williamson, Dhawan found himself somewhat pushed away from the leadership group.
In a media statement issued on Monday, Sunrirsers said the rules did not permit an increase in the amount using the RTM card unless they had signed Dhawan in the open auction for a bigger price. “The Sunrisers were delighted to pick up Shikhar in the auction after using one of its RTM (right to match) cards earlier in the year,” the statement said. “Unfortunately, it has become apparent that the player has been unsettled ever since with the amount he was bought for in the auction, which unfortunately we cannot rectify due to IPL rules.”
The decision to trade Dhawan, Sunrisers said, was made with a “heavy heart”, and mainly because the player was not happy. “The franchise has made the decision to trade Shikhar as they feel it is best for both parties. Sunrisers values the great contribution that Shikhar has made over the years and saddened that due to financial reasons he feels it’s time to move on.”
Daredevils have welcomed the inclusion of “local boy” Dhawan. It is a homecoming for the batsman, who hails from Delhi and played for Daredevils in the inaugural IPL season in 2008. This is Daredevils’ first trade ahead of the auction.
Parth Jindal, one of the owners and the director of Daredevils, said Dhawan brought immense experience to the roster and would help “solidify” their top order.