Just when all the plans were being made, the Delhi Daredevils were dealt a huge blow with JP Duminy deciding to withdraw from IPL 2017.
Also read: Harsha Bhogle to return in IPL 2017
The South African all-rounder cited personal reasons for making the decision, and the big question now for the Delhi Daedevils is who can replace Duminy?
Here is a list of players, who could do a good job and make an impact in IPL 2017 if they are given an opportunity, after going unsold in the player auction.
Jonny Bairstow: Not a player who can contribute with the ball as well like Duminy, but definitely an impact man. Can also keep wickets, if Quinton de Kock is unavailable, and while he is not a first-choice in the playing XI of England, Bairstow is definitely someone who could set the IPL 2017 stage on fire, if given a chance.
Mitchell Santner: One of the more surprising unsold players that went under the radar. Santner can be so effective in T20 cricket – he is hard to get away, will also pick up wickets and is more than handy with the bat.
The New Zealand all-rounder should have really been picked by someone in the auction, and while he isn't as good a batsman as Duminy, he could be a valuable contributor to DD's success, if chosen.
Farhaan Behardien: Fellow South African and could be the go-to guy to chip in with the runs and also bowl a couple of overs when necessary. Not as good a batsman as Duminy, though, and maybe not as effective with the ball either.
With the Delhi Daredevils already having plenty of medium-pace bowling all-rounders in their squad, Behardien will find it difficult to get into the playing XI if called up as a replacement.
Johan Botha: One of the forgotten men of international cricket, but still doing it consistently on the domestic circuit. Always one of the most difficult bowlers to get away, Botha, an Australian citizen now, could be a useful tool to use, particularly on wickets that could help the slower bowlers.
More of a bowling all-rounder, though, so won't be a like-for-like replacement for Duminy, but comes with plenty of experience, including playing in the IPL.
Marlon Samuels: Good top order bat, and as he showed in the World T20 2016 final, a match-winner on his day. Now that he is allowed to bowl, after serving a 12-month ban, could chip in with a few, hopefully legal, off-spinners as well.
How about nobody: Ok, so all those five are decent replacements, but looking at the Delhi Daredevils squad, a good case could be made for the team not even needing a replacement for Duminy.
They already have De Kock, Sam Billings, Chris Morris, Carlos Brathwaite, Kagiso Rabada, Pat Cummins, Angelo Mathews and Corey Anderson in their squad. Yes, there is no spin-bowling all-rounder in that lineup, but with so many overseas options and only four able to play, DD coaches Rahul Dravid and Paddy Upton might just think "Ok, we have enough already, maybe we don't need anyone to replace JP."