The recently-concluded Indian Premier League (IPL) auction witnessed riveting bidding wars among the glamorous franchises as usual.
While big-named international stars such as Shakib Al Hasan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Eoin Morgan, Martin Guptil, Imran Tahir remained unpicked, the franchises broke their bank on the proven and promising home-grown Indian players, capped or otherwise.
However, Suresh Raina, the fourth-highest run-getter in IPL history, did not find a team this time.
Eventually, approximately 552 crores of rupees were splurged on 204 players by the ten franchises in the two-day auction, held during the past couple of days. 108 players were signed for a crore indian rupees or more, among which seven Indian players found themselves in the 10 crore club.
It was interesting to see the promising Indian players hogging the spotlight. Sheryas Iyer, the stylish middle-order batter, was roped in by the Kolkata Knight Riders for a whopping 12.25 crore rupees on day one of auction. Kolkata otherwise, made budget buys overall and managed to recruit Pat Cummins, Mohammad Nabi and Tim Southee among others.
Deepak Chahar became the most expensive Indian fast bowler as Chennai Super Kings got their man for 14 crore rupees. Chennai recruited Shivam Dube for 4 crore rupees, their most expensive buy on day two. Chennai also managed to ensure the services of DJ Bravo, their trusted seasoned campaigner from the Carribeans.
Meanwhile, 23-year old Ishan Kishan was at the centre of attraction as he found his home in Mumbai Indians, who splurged 15.25 crore rupees on the talented wicketkeeper-batter. Ishan became the second-highest buy in IPL’s history. Mumbai also drew attention as they roped in Tim David of Singapore for 8.25 crore rupees and England’s Jofra Archer for 8 crore.
IPL debutant Lucknow Super Giants had already made their mark before the auction began, having drafted Afghan star leggie Rashid Khan and local superstar Hardik Pandya. They then desperately and successfully sought out for the uncapped Avesh Khan. The 25-year-old nippy seam bowler generated a 10 crore rupees bid while Lucknow went on grab hold of Jason Holder as the West Indian was brought for 8.75 crore rupees.
Punjab Kings shelled out big sums on both days of auction. First they confirmed Kagiso Rabada as the South African was hired for 9.25 crore and on the next day, for 11.5 crore, they ensured the services of Liam Livingston, who became the most expensive Englishmen in IPL history.
Meanwhile, Delhi Capitals, who roped in the Bangladesh starlet Mustafizur Rahman at the base price of 2 crore, picked up the star of the latest T20 World Cup Mitchell Marsh for 6.5 crore alongside his compatriot David Warner.
As far as other notable signings of overseas players were concerned, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Sunrisers Hyderabad acquired the services of the hot-shots Wanindu Hasaranga and Nicholas Pooran, respectively, at 10.75 crore rupees while Rajasthan Royals drew attention by picking up Shimron Hetmyer of the West Indies for 8.50 crore and Gujrat Titans locked in the Kiwi Lockie Ferguson in their ranks for 10 crore indian rupees.
The 2022 IPL is scheduled to be underway from April 02 and wrap up on June 03 this year. a