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IPL 2018: Player auction gets underway; 1000 cricketers up for grabs

With Rs 4.35 billion available for player acquisition, this is one of the biggest auctions in the history of the annual T-20 tournament

Urvi Malvania  |  Mumbai 

Photo: @IPL Twitter
Photo: @IPL Twitter

The eight franchises in the vivo Indian Premier League (IPL) will be putting their best bids forward in perhaps the biggest auction in the tournament. Up to Rs 4.35 billion could be spent on player acquisition this year in an auction which has over 1000 players from 13 cricketing nations go under the hammer. A total of 18 players have been retained by the teams before the auction. This year, 282 overseas players including 58 Australian players, 57 South African players and 39 each from West Indies and Sri Lanka will be up for grabs in the auction.

There are more than 750 Indian players, capped and uncapped in the auction pool. Among the Indian players up for grabs are heavyweights like Gautam Gambhir, Yuvraj Singh, off spinners and Harbhajan Singh, Ajinkya Rahane, and openers KL Rahul and M Vijay. The overseas players the franchises will want to bid for include Chris Gayle, Ben Stokes, Chris Lynn, Eoin Morgan and pacers Mitchell Starc, Shane Watson, Dwayne Bravo, Ben Stokes (2017’s most expensive player in the auction), Angelo Mathews and Pat Cummins among others. With the player salary purse beefed up to Rs 800 million this year, the franchises are expected to put up a tough fight for the players they want in the team. After the retention process, the teams have depleted some of the funds, but franchises like Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab, having retained just one player, go in with a hefty Rs 675 million (see chart). IPL IPL Graph

First Published: Sat, January 27 2018. 09:45 IST