Uncapped Indians strike it rich in IPL auction

Uncapped Indians strike it rich in IPL auction

Shane Watson fetched the highest bid but the story of the day belonged to uncapped Indians striking it rich at the ninth IPL Players’ Auction here on Saturday.

Pawan Negi led the way as Delhi Daredevils shelled out Rs 8.5 crore for the left-handed all-rounder from Delhi. Though Watson attracted Rs 9.5 crore from a base price of Rs 2 crore by Royal Challengers Bangalore, Negi went almost 29 times more than his base price of Rs 30 lakh as Daredevils and Rising Pune Supergiants pursued the 23-year-old. Negi was with Chennai Super Kings for the last two years.

Other players that generated intense bidding were Tamil Nadu leg-spinner Murugan Ashwin (Rs 4.5 crore to Supergiants), Baroda all-rounder Deepak Hooda (Rs 4.2 crore to Sunrisers Hyderabad), Karnataka’s middle-order batsman Karun Nair (Rs 4 crore to Daredevils) and Rajasthan pacer Nathu Singh (Rs 3.2 crore to Mumbai Indians). All these players’ base prices ranged from Rs 10 lakh to 30 lakh.

The other Indian players to rake in the big moolah were seamer Mohit Sharma, who was paid Rs 6.5 crore by Kings XI Punjab over his base price of Rs 2 crore, and veteran Ashish Nehra who went to Sunrisers Hyderabad for Rs 5.5 crore (base price Rs 2 crore).

Slow start for Yuvraj
Yuvraj Singh had gone for Rs 14 crore and Rs 16 crore in 2014 and 2015 auctions, respectively, but this time there appeared to be no takers for the southpaw as there was a long delay before Mumbai made the first move. The bidding picked up slowly with Royal Challengers and later Sunrisers Hyderabad joining the race. Mumbai pulled out at Rs 5.5 crore, while Challengers stopped at Rs 7 crore as Hyderabad bagged the all-rounder.
West Indies all-rounder Carlos Brathwaite sprang another surprise after he was hired for Rs 4.2 crore by Daredevils.

The two new teams — Supergiants and Gujarat Lions — went on a shopping spree to complement their core group of five players. While Supergiants bought as many as four all-rounders, including Mitchell Marsh and Irfan Pathan, Lions showed their interest in packing their side with pacers.

Daredevils, with a maximum purse of Rs 37.15 crore, too, made some big buys but they exercised much more caution.

They didn’t attempt to buy any marquee player, while their first bid came only in the third segment (of wicketkeepers) where they bought Sanju Samson for Rs 4.2 crore. Daredevils, who will be mentored by Rahul Dravid for the next two editions, also spent Rs 7 crore for South African Chris Morris (base price Rs 50 lakh) after beating Mumbai’s challenge. He was previously part of Rajasthan Royals.

MI subdued
Mumbai Indians were expectedly subdued having retained as many as 19 players and they were more than happy to have England’s wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler for a bargain price of Rs 3.8 crore.

Daredevils entered the bid only after Morris’ value shot up to Rs 6 crore, but team’s CEO TA Sekar insisted the all-rounder was always in their scheme of things. Veterans Michael Hussey, David Hussey and Mahela Jayawardene didn’t elicit any interest and there were no bids for the in-from Martin Guptill and Usman Khawaja.

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