Yuvraj attracts record price

Yuvraj attracts record price

Daredevils buy star left-hander for Rs 16 crore; Mahela, Sanga remain unsold

Yuvraj attracts record price

Yuvraj Singh raked in the biggest moolah for the second straight year while an unheralded KC Cariappa caused a mighty stir as the Indian Premier League auction once again saw the franchises spend their money wisely.

A year after being procured by the Royal Challengers Bangalore for a whopping Rs 14 crore, the 34-year-old Yuvraj was in the thick of things again as RCB and Delhi Daredevils upped the ante before the latter bought him for Rs 16 crore.

Drawn fifth from the pot of marquee players’ list with a base price of Rs 2 crore, flamboyant Yuvraj unsurprisingly saw many takers despite his international career on the crossroads. Rajasthan Royals, who showed early interest in the Punjabi, backed out after Delhi Daredevils joined the party at Rs 5 crore.

Determined to buy him back after releasing him late last year in hope of getting a cheaper deal, RCB were made to rethink their plans after Delhi went all out by raising the value to Rs 14 crore. RCB think-tank, in a telephonic conversation with coach Daniel Vettori and Virat Kohli away playing the World Cup, pitched for Rs 14.5 crore as one wondered the wisdom behind their decision to sell a player and try getting him for more. Delhi raised their bid Rs 15 crore while RCB added another Rs 50 lakh to that sum.

Delhi then pitched for Rs 16 crore, roping in the player they felt would change their fortunes after finishing rock-bottom last season. Bengaluru cricketer Cariappa was one player who added a surprising twist to an auction that otherwise largely went on the predictable path. With even some national capped players going unsold and auctioneer Richard Madley discarding some seasoned performers into the ‘recall’ bin, one assumed that Cariappa too would pass off silently after coming up at a base price of Rs 10 lakh. Kolkata Knight Riders made an instant pitch.

KKR then were in for a shock as Delhi too expressed their liking for the 20-year-old leg-spinner turned off-spinner who is yet to play even top-level State cricket. Having seen him bowl during net sessions last season, KKR showed their interest in Cariappa while DD, still with plenty of money, too gave a tough run.

After some high-pitched battle for an unknown player, reigning champions eventually got him for Rs 2.4 crore, a buy that turned out to be their costliest purchase of the day. Most team made some smart buys, seemingly pre-decided on the players they wanted. RCB, with a balance of Rs 20.8 crore, sought the services of wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik for Rs 10.5 crore and then pitched successfully for all-rounder Darren Sammy (Rs 2.80 crore), a big-hitter down the order and a useful medium pacer. They added another all-rounder, South Africa’s David Wiese, for Rs 2.80 crore. RCB also strengthened their bowling, considered their weakness over the last few seasons, by taking in pacers Sean Abbott and Adam Milne for Rs one crore and Rs 70 lakh respectively.

Delhi, looking to rebuild their team, purchased a total of 14 players, with the key ones being Lankan Test and ODI captain Angelo Matthews for Rs 7.50 crore, pacer Zaheer Khan (Rs 4 crore), South African all-rounder Albie Morkel (Rs 30 lakh) and Karnataka’s CM Gautam (Rs 20 lakh). There was an English flavour to Sunrisers Hyderabad buying. Kevin Pietersen (Rs 2 crore), current England ODI skipper Eoin Morgan (Rs 1.5 crore) and all-rounder Ravi Bopara (Rs 1 crore) were the players they bought from the Old Blighty.

Amongst the big names that went unsold were Tillakratne Dilshan, Marlon Samuels, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Ross Taylor, David Hussey and Hashim Amla.
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