Mumbai, August 26: R Ashwin is not going through a good time these days. After getting excluded from the first Test against the West Indies at Antigua, the experienced off-spinner now stands to lose the Kings XI Punjab captaincy in IPL 2020.
According to some reports, the Kings XI wants to replace Ashwin as captain and the franchise might even offload him. Delhi Capitals and Rajasthan Royals have expressed interest to rope in Ashwin in a trade off and a decision in this regard will be taken when the Kings XI management meets this weekend.
Ashwin was picked by Kings XI in the auction ahead of IPL 2018 for Rs 7.8 crore after Chennai Super Kings let him go. He led Kings XI in IPL 2018 and IPL 2019 without much success though. He has taken 25 wickets from 28 games for them but failed to lead the side into the play-offs which might have led the management to the thought of replacing him.
Though Ashwin will not suffer financially, it is unlikely that he will retain his status as captain in any of the aforementioned teams. Delhi Capitals are set with Shreyas Iyer at the helm and he had led them to play-offs last seasson. Royals had shifted the captiancy between Ajinkya Rahane and Steve Smith in IPL 2019 and they are likely to continue with Smith the next season too.
If Ashwin departs, Kings XI will have to find a new captain and they are mulling handing over the reins to KL Rahul, a success for them in the last two seasons while opening the innings.
The Punjab team had also parted ways with head coach Mike Hesson, who recently joined Royal Challengers Bangalore for a similar role, and they are on the lookout for a new coach. It has been reported that Kings XI may approach George Bailey or Darren Lehmann for the role and a decision in that direction too will be taken in the management meeting.