One of the biggest problems plaguing the Royal Challengers Bangalore this year’s IPL was inconsistency. There were only a handful of performers and the failure of key players like Virat Kohli and Chris Gayle was a major issue for them. They played 5 bowlers in most matches but that also did not always work for them.
AB de Villiers – Scored the maximum runs for his team (395 from 14 matches with 3 half centuries) and bore the responsibility of the team admirably. He should be retained in 2015 as well and if possible, he should be made the captain.
Virat Kohli – He scored 359 runs in 14 games with a couple of fifties to his credit. However, the team needed a lot more from him in order to be a consistent threat. He will be there in 2015 but he needs to be relieved of captaincy so that he can concentrate on contributing more as a batsman.
Varun Aaron – The fast bowler claimed 16 wickets from 10 games and while he was a bit on the expensive side he always achieved important breakthroughs. It is a mystery as to why he missed 4 games. He could spearhead the attack in 2015 as well.
Abu Nechim – The young quickie played 4 games but could pick up only 3 wickets and also conceded 7.88 runs an over – not exactly the sort of results the team management would have hoped for. He might have to play for another team in 2015.
Yuzvendra Chahal – The leg spinner started well but then petered out in the end. He got 12 wickets in 14 games but was fairly economical at 7.01 runs per over. This is the only reason that he may be retained in 2015.
Ashok Dinda – The Bengal quick bowler tried wholeheartedly as ever, but with 5 wickets and an economy rate of 8.70 runs from 9 games it would be hard for him to find a place in the Royal Challengers lineup in 2015.
Chris Gayle – He has been the star performer for the Bangalore-based franchise but 2014 was a difficult year, with his appearances limited to 9 games owing to fitness issues, and even in those games he got 196 runs without a single score of note. He might be left out in 2015 unless he performs exceptionally well in international cricket in the interim.
Shadab Jakati – This combative spinner all-rounder surprisingly got only game where he was taken for 41 runs in 3.4 overs and did not get a chance to bat. Given how well RCB’s spin bowling unit performed he should be there in 2015 and should be given more opportunities to prove his mettle.
Albie Morkel – Like Jakati he had been an integral part of the Chennai Super Kings juggernaut in the past and like Jakati he was unable to reproduce the goods in the limited opportunities he received – 45 runs and 4 wickets from 7 games. So, there is a slight possibility that in 2015 he may have to look for a new team.
Muttiah Muralitharan – He had a year to forget, with 3 wickets from 5 games at an economy rate of 7.75. He has already stated that this may be his last IPL – if only it would have been a bit more memorable it would have been befitting of his stature as a reputed international performer.
Harshal Patel – The seamer played 3 games where he picked up 4 wickets but he was highly expensive, conceding 10.27 runs per over. However, his wicket-taking abilities could see the Royal Challengers Bangalore gunning for him in 2015 as well.
Parthiv Patel – The wicketkeeper who has played for the national team made a good beginning to the tournament but then struggled for impact. He played 12 games to score 205 runs, the 4th highest for the team and this included a 50 as well. There is a good chance that one will see him behind the stumps in 2015 too.
Ravi Rampaul – The fast bowler from the Caribbean Islands got only 2 games to show his worth and could pick up only 1 wicket but he was the most economical in the team, with 6.16 runs. He should play a much bigger role in 2015.
Sachin Rana – The batsman cum all-rounder received 9 games where he scored 73 runs and conceded 8 runs an over in the few overs that he bowled. He may have wanted to make a better impact but for that to happen in 2015 he may need to look for a new team.
Rilee Rossouw – He played only 3 matches and was chosen as a replacement for the injured Nic Maddinson. However, he would have hoped for a better performance than 39 runs and may need to look for other opportunities in 2015.
Mitchell Starc – The Australian fast bowler was one of the few bright lights in an otherwise disappointing campaign for Bangalore, picking up 14 wickets from 14 games. Should be a definite starter in 2015 as well and the team management should look to form a lethal partnership between him and Aaron.
Yogesh Takawale – He played 5 games and got 104 runs without any half century – he would have definitely liked to have played a more important role but there is a chance that he may be allowed to leave in 2015.
Yuvraj Singh – Other than a couple of matches here and there, Yuvraj Singh was in his element, smashing 376 runs from 14 games with 3 half centuries. He also picked up 5 wickets with his left arm spin. He is yet another candidate who is a certainty for 2015 and a dark horse when it comes to captaincy.
Vijay Zol – He was unable to reproduce the form he has shown of late in first-class cricket in IPL, scoring only 29 runs from 3 games. However, he is a long-term prospect especially at the top order and it may be foolhardy to omit him in 2015.
It may be wrong to cast off Tanmay Mishra and Sandeep Warrier, who did not get any opportunities this year.