Chennai Super Kings - two-time winners of the Indian Premier League - managed to retain five of its star players including skipper MS Dhoni and maverick all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja for the seventh edition of the tournament.
The rules allow each franchise to retain five playersÂ with only four capped Indian players. While Dhoni, Raina and spinner Ravichandran Ashwin have always been part of CSK, the franchise bought Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo in past years and have chosen to retain their services, ahead of the auctions in March. Some other big names - Michael Hussey, Albie Morkel and Murali Vijay have been left out but can still come back via joker's card - a rule which allows each of team to buy back some of their own players who they don't retain. According to this rule, after the bidding for the player is closed, the franchise that owned him in the 2013 season have a veto-like power to reclaim him at the price at which he was bid for. (Read more about rules and predictions here)
Franchises have been involved in different permutations and combinations to combat the new right-to-match (joker's card) rule and emerge with a strong squad after the auctions. While Royal Challengers Bangalore, on Thursday, retained Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers, Rajasthan Royals too have announced that Shane Watson, James Faulkner, Sanju Samson, Ajinkya Rahane and Stuart Binny will continue playing for the winners of the 2008 edition.
Meanwhile, reports earlier revealed that Kolkata Knight Riders will retain skipper Gautam Gambhir and spinner Sunil Narine. (Read full report here)