"It’s a life changing amount of money."
Ben Stokes has become the highest-paid foreign player ever in the Indian Premier League (IPL). IPL’s Rising Pune Supergiants bought him in a deal worth £1.7 million.
His deal makes him the top-paid cricketer of 2017, beating the likes of Virat Kohli and Shikar Dhawan. The history-making bid took place at an auction, where players were bought by cricket teams.
At the beginning of the auction, suspicions grew that Ben Stokes would be signed up. Those suspicions proved to be correct as five Indian cricket teams fought for him in a bid.
With a base price of £240,000, teams Mumbai Indians, Sunrisers Hyderabad, Delhi Daredevils, Rising Pune Supergiants and Royal Challengers Bangalore made bids for him.
Rising Pune Supergiants won with their unbelievable bid of £1.7 million.
Speaking about the auction, Ben Stokes says: “It’s a life changing amount of money.”
“I was following on Twitter, I didn’t actually see the auction live. I kept on refreshing. I saw people were tweeting and then I realised that Pune had got me. I wasn’t sure how much a crore was. It was complete carnage.”
— Pune Supergiants (@RPSupergiants) February 20, 2017
Recently, Ben Stokes became appointed as England’s vice-captain. This means that the managers of the England cricket team and Rising Pune Supergiants will need to discuss how Stokes can commit to both teams’ matches. So far, managers have agreed he will miss two matches against Ireland. These will be on the 5th and 7th May 2017.
Ben Stokes has also become the second highest-paid cricket player in an auction.
The title of the highest-paid belongs to Yuvraj Singh. Delhi Daredevils bought him for a staggering £1.9 million in 2015.
The auction also saw Tymal Mills bought for £1.4 million by Royal Challengers Bangalore. This was a big achievement for the player as he was close to retirement in 2014. With a congenital back condition, he has become a Twenty20 player.
Mills said of the auction: “When it finished I did not know how much it was worth. When I worked it out I could not believe it, it did not seem real. It’s an amount of money that can change your life. It will for me.”
The auction meant huge success for English cricket players. Fans of Ben Stokes and Tymal Mills will be keen to watch them play their next game in their new Indian teams.