Former Australia wicketkeeper-batter Adam Gilchrist believes Afghanistan's charismatic spinner Rashid Khan could start a bidding war among franchises when the Big Bash League (BBL) Player Draft is held on August 28.
Leg-spinner Rashid Khan, one of the key players in Gujarat Titans' IPL 2022 title triumph, has spent the last five tournaments with the Adelaide Strikers and if reports emerging ahead of the Draft are any indication, the 23-year-old could be the subject of a bidding war between franchises.
The Melbourne Renegades hold the first pick in the BBL-12 Draft.
"My tip, the Melbourne Renegades have first pick, I think they'll maybe go for Rashid Khan, which will then force the Adelaide Striker's hand to retain him if they want to play that card," the legendary Australian cricketer told SEN's Whateley on Wednesday.
He also felt devastating England batter Liam Livingstone, who is in the list of 12 'Platinum category' players, could be snapped up quickly in the Draft.
"I think Liam Livingstone, he's the big sleeper for me in that list of platinum players," Gilchrist said. With 25 international appearances for England, and having spent two seasons with the Perth Scorchers (2019-2021), the 29-year-old Livingstone had also emerged as the Most Valuable Player during The Hundred in 2021.
In a bid to spice up the Big Bash League, Cricket Australia (CA) will be holding the player draft for the first time in the historyof the lucrative tournament, with more than 250 nominated players from 19 countries divided into categories based on their likely salaries.
The first round of the Draft features only the platinum players, which has the likes of South Africa's Faf du Plessis and the West Indian pair of Kieron Pollard and Andre Russell in addition to Livingstone and Rashid Khan.
Gilchrist was also a bit sceptical about Cricket Australia being able to get things right in the first year of the Draft.
"I know that they're keen to make it a big event on TV. It's going to be frustrating that none of the players will be there, but that's the nature of the beast given that they're on a global stage," Gilchrist said.
"It will be interesting. I don't think its going to be perfect, I know that there's frustrations to an extent from a lot of the franchises around what they can and can't do and what their obligations are."