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Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni set to be retained by RCB and CSK

Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni set to be retained by RCB and CSK

The 11th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is set to be a huge event with nearly every player going under the auction hammer.

However, there has been no clarity over the third retained player.

Before the much-hyped Player Auction which will be taking place on January 27 and 28 in Bengaluru, the franchisees have been given an opportunity to retain a core of their previous squad members through an official retention event.

Suresh Raina last played for India was against England in a T20I in February 2017, while MS Dhoni continues being a vital part of India's limited-overs.

Here's all you need to know about the live coverage of IPL Player retention 2018.

When will the live coverage of the event start?

With Dhoni and Raina confirmed favourite picks, CSK is still mulling over the third choice, with a dearth of options available.

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After a two-year spot-fixing ban was imposed on CSK in 2015, Raina went on to captain Gujarat Lions (GL) while Dhoni led Sanjeev Goenka-owned Rising Pune Supergiants, before Steve Smith replaced him in the captaincy role.

· If two players are retained, franchises will be charged Rs 12.5 crore for the first and Rs 8.5 crore for the second. Kings XI Punjab has said it may retain one player.

The break-up is a maximum number of 3 capped Indian players, 2 overseas players and 2 uncapped Indian players each.

Even given the enhanced auction purse - up Rs 14 crore to Rs 80 crore from the pre-existing Rs 66 crore - the retention conundrum will be a tricky one. We will have him back as captain.

The three-time victor has built its team around the leadership of the India ODI opener. In that day, the teams can able to retain their other two players through the Right to Match (RTM) card. Some others could be considered a cinch - Hardik Pandya (Mumbai), AB de Villiers (Bangalore), Rishabh Pant (Delhi Daredevils).

The flexibility that the RtM card offers might encourage the franchises to be somewhat conservative with their retentions and adopt a more aggressive approach at the auction, though the strategy is certain to change from one franchise to another.

Meanwhile, There has been no confirmation about Gautam Gambhir's retention by Kolkata Knight Riders.