How the eight IPL teams took care of their purses at Saturday’s auction
Ben Stokes was the highest earner on Day One. Rajasthan Royals purchased him for Rs.12.5 cr
The Indian Premier League (IPL) lived up to its title as Indian domestic cricketers reaped rich rewards for their performances during Day One of the auction here on Saturday. A total of 110 players went under the hammer with 78 sold. Overall, R321.10 crore were spent with England all-rounder Ben Stokes emerging as the highest earner through a R12.5 crore bid from Rajasthan Royals.
mid-day gives a lowdown on how the teams went about their business:
Mumbai Indians: The three-time IPL champions bought just six players, retaining Kieron Pollard (R5.4 cr) and Krunal Pandya (R8.8 cr) through Right To Match (RTM) cards. They bid aggressively when the wicketkeepers went under the hammer, but ultimately settled for uncapped Ishan Kishan at R6.2 crore. MI did not tinker with their strategy to go for a good fast bowling group as they successfully bid for Mustafizur Rehman (R2.2 cr) and Pat Cummins (R5.4 cr). “We back ourselves to bowl two foreign fast bowlers in Mumbai. The good thing about Fizz and Pat is they are young,” said MI owner Akash Ambani.
Delhi Daredevils: Their biggest headache of finding a leader was solved quickly when Gautam Gambhir was bought for R2.8 crore. Head coach Ricky Ponting said the Indian opener will lead them. They also managed to retain Mohammed Shami and Kagiso Rabada through RTM.
Sunrisers Hyderabad: The IPL-10 runners-up bought 14 players and used their RTMs for Shikhar Dhawan (R5.2 cr) and Rashid Khan (R9 cr). They bid aggressively for all-rounders and got Carlos Braithwaite and Yusuf Pathan at R2 cr and R1.9 cr respectively.
Kings XI Punjab: They opened like batting in the Powerplay, going for almost every player, but later made calculative moves. All their nine buys were R1 crore-plus. Punjab’s strategy was to go for the kill in the beginning.
Rajasthan Royals: RR had an equal purse as KXIP, but opted for a cautious approach. They went all out to buy Stokes, Sanju Samson (R8 cr) and Jofra Archer (R7.2 cr). “The ECB has cleared Stokes for auction; he’s legally available,” said chairman and CEO Ranjit Barthakur.
Chennai Super Kings: They got back most of the players that were part of their core group like of Dwayne Bravo and Faf du Plessis. Head coach Stephen Fleming said: “The core is still Indian players though. We have some very good Indian players in the mix.”
Royal Challengers B’lore: While the RCB were over cautious at the start, they ultimately ended up buying 11 players which include five overseas players (Chris Woakes, Brendon McCullum, Quinton de Kock, Colin de Grandhomme and Moeen Ali). Kolkata Knight Riders: The two-time champions went all out to secure foreigners on their target, spending R9.6cr and R9.4cr on Chris Lynn and Mitchell Starc respectively. They then invested heavily on Indian domestic players.