The players auction for the Indian Premier League cricket competition took place in Goa and two England players, Andrew Flintoff and Kevin Pieterson achieved the highest bids. Both were sold for a record breaking $1.55m to Chennai Super Kings and Bangalore Royal Challengers respectively.
This is an incredible price and shows that the IPL means big business in India for the teams and their owners. The owner of Bangalore Royal Challengers, Vijay Mallya said that he was prepared to pay more for Kevin Pieterson because team balance was important and he would play a key role to maintain for this in his team. This beats the 2008 auction record which was for India’a captain, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, when Chennai Super Kings paid $1.5m for him.
Ravi Bopara attracted a lot of interest too at the auction, from a base price of $150,000, he was finally bought for $450,000 by Kings XI Punjab. Bollywood actress, Priety Zinta, who is the co-owner of the team, said that they wanted such a player because he is an all rounder and will fit into their plans well.
The IPL commissioner Lalit Modi has commented on player signings, he said, “One thing is sure. This time it will be more about strategy. The teams have signed players for three years last season. So they have particular spots to fill and have to study the availability of the players.”
The second IPL season starts on 10th April and the teams are now busy beefing up their squads to ensure that they have the right players with the right mix to compete in this 20/20 cricket extravaganza.
Here is a table of who, from which nation, went to which team, and for what price at the auction.
|Kevin Pieterson (England)||Bangalore Royal Challengers||$1,550,000|
|Andrew Flintoff (England)||Chennai Super Kings||$1,550,000|
|Ravi Bopara (England)||Kings XI Punjab||$450,000|
|Owais Shah (England)||Delhi Daredevils||$275,000|
|Paul Collingwood (England)||Delhi Daredevils||$275,000|
|Shaun Tait (Australia)||Rajasthan Royals||$375,000|
|George Bailey (Australia)||Chennai Super Kings||$50,000|
|Thilan Tushara (Sri Lanka)||Chennai Super Kings||$140,000|
|Mohammad Ashraful (Bangladesh)||Mumbai Indians||$75,000|
|Mashrafe Bin Mortaza (Bangladesh)||Kolkata Knight Riders||$600,000|
|Jesse Ryder (New Zealand)||Bangalore Royal Challengers||$160,000|
|Kyle Mills (New Zealand)||Mumbai Indians||$150,000|
|JP Duminy (South Africa)||Mumbai Indians||$950,000|
|Tyron Henderson (South Africa)||Rajasthan Royals||$650,000|
|Fidel Edwards (West Indies)||Deccan Chargers||$150,000|
|Dwayne Smith (West Indies)||Deccan Chargers||$100,000|
|Jerome Taylor (West Indies)||Kings XI Punjab||$150,000|
Players unsold at the auction included, Stuart Clark, Brad Haddin, Chamara Kapugedera, Ashwell Prince, Phil Jaques, Andre Nel, Luke Wright, Nuwan Kulasekara, Samit Patel, Shakib-al-Hassan, Morne Van Wyk, Stephen Smith, Ashley Noffke, Gulam Bodi, Daren Powell, Tamim Iqbal, Jon Moss, Bryce McGain, James Franklin, Aiden Blizzard, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Michael Klinger, Kaushalya Weeraratne, Prasanna Jayawardene, Dominic Thornley, Yusuf Abdulla, Daniel Harris, Kemar Roach, Aaron Bird, Michael Dighton, Michael Hill and Brett Geeves
The ten Pakistan players have been barred from taking part in the second IPL season by the Pakistani government, further to a break-down in cross-border relations with India after the Mumbai terror strikes.
With respect to this action, the IPL franchises terminated the contracts of their six Pakistan cricketers. Namely, Shoaib Malik, Younis Khan, Shoaib Akhtar, Shahid Afridi, Salman Butt and Mohammed Hafeez. Four other contracts of Umar Gul, (Kolkata Knightriders), Misbahul Haq (Bangalore Royal Challengers), Kamran Akmal and Sohail Tanvir (Rajasthan Royals) have been suspended, allowing the affected teams to sign replacements outside of the auction.
So, the IPL fever has started with player auctions making the news. With Bollywood celebrity support and huge business financing, the IPL is sure to be one cricket tournament that will provide the entertainment to the masses that love this style of cricket. With the kind investments involved there is no doubt that there will be winners and losers both at the game level and especially, the banking level.