The Indian Premier League (IPL) is not only a cricket tournament but also a festival that has won the hearts of Indians. In the past 15 years, 15 franchises have participated in the league, with 10 of them actively playing every year. The tournament has given 12 cities the opportunity to be a part of it.
In the first edition, star players such as Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Virender Sehwag, and Yuvraj Singh played for their home city-based franchises to gain a large fan base. However, after the third season, prominent players started playing for franchises based in cities other than their own.
Currently, Rohit Sharma and Rishabh Pant play for Mumbai Indians (MI) and Delhi Capitals, respectively, representing their home cities. However, there are still some players who have not had the chance to play for their home cities after 15 IPL editions.
Here are three players who have yet to represent their home cities in the IPL.
Number 1. Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah is a vital cog in the Mumbai Indians (MI) bowling attack, thanks to his exceptional bowling abilities. Since making his IPL debut in 2013, the talented right-arm fast bowler has been a one-team man and hasn’t played for any other franchise. Bumrah burst onto the scene in the 2016 edition of the tournament, where he picked up 15 wickets in 14 games for MI at an economy rate of 7.80.
With 145 scalps in 120 matches at an economy of 7.39, the 29-year-old is the second-highest wicket-taker for MI after Lasith Malinga, the former Sri Lankan player and MI stalwart. Bumrah’s domestic team is Gujarat, where he was born and raised.
The Gujarat Titans (GT) franchise was established in Bumrah’s home state of Gujarat last year and won the title in their debut season under the leadership of Hardik Pandya. While many GT fans would love to see the local boy play for their team, it seems unlikely in the current circumstances.
Number 2. Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli has proven himself to be one of the most successful batters in the international arena, exhibiting his prowess in all three forms of the game. In the Indian Premier League (IPL), the 34-year-old stands out as the leading run-scorer, having amassed 6,624 runs with five centuries and 44 half-centuries in 223 matches, with a strike rate of 129.14.
In 2008, Kohli was picked up by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) based on his impressive performances as a batter and captain in the 2008 U-19 World Cup. Ahead of the inaugural season, Delhi Capitals also had the opportunity to add the local boy Kohli to their roster. However, DC opted to select Pradeep Sangwan, a bowler, instead of Kohli, as they already had a sufficient number of batters in their squad.
Kohli went on to captain RCB from 2013 to 2021, delivering some outstanding moments to the franchise’s supporters with his leadership abilities. In 2016, the talented India player put up his best IPL performance, scoring 973 runs in 16 games with his bat and also leading RCB to the final of the tournament with his captaincy.
Number 3. Dinesh Karthik
Dinesh Karthik made his debut in the Indian Premier League (IPL) with Delhi Capitals (DC) in the first edition of the tournament. He played 13 matches as a lower-middle-order batter and scored 145 runs. DC retained him for the next two seasons as well but released him after the third season. After that, Karthik played for five different franchises till 2021.
In 2011, Punjab Kings (PBKS) bought him but released him before the next season. Similarly, Mumbai Indians (MI) bought him for the fifth and sixth seasons, but they also parted ways with him later. In 2018, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) signed him and even appointed him as their captain.
After playing for 14 seasons with different franchises, Karthik joined Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) for the second time in 2022. He had played for RCB in 2015 as well. Despite his excellent keeping and batting skills, his home team Chennai Super Kings (CSK) never gave him a chance due to the presence of MS Dhoni. However, it remains to be seen whether Karthik will be a part of CSK after Dhoni’s retirement. Like the former India captain, Karthik could also be an excellent match-finisher and wicket-keeper for CSK.