IPL auction ends; Dhoni top scores with $1.5 million

Thursday, February 21, 2008

IPL auction ends; Dhoni top scores with $1.5 million

Player Auction for the BCCI's upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL) concluded late Wednesday evening and the biggest name to go under the hammer was India's T20 winning team captain MS Dhoni.

Captain courageous as Dhoni is popularly called went for a whopping $1.5 million (Rs 60 million) to 'Chennai Super Kings' owned by BCCI treasurer N Srinivasan's India Cements Limited.

Burly Australian all-rounder Andrew Symonds was the only other player after Dhoni to breach the million-dollar mark, being the costliest foreigner to get sold for $1.35 million to the Hyderabad franchise in the third round of the player auction.

Ishant Sharma after his heroics in Australia came close. He got $950,000 while Irfan Pathan went for $925,000.

Not surprisingly members from India's victorious T20 World Cup campaign did really well. RP Singh led the pack, going to the Hyderabad team for $875,000.

Robin Uthappa went for $800,000, notching four times the base price of $200,000. He will be batting for Mukesh Ambani's Mumbai team. Rohit Sharma went to Hyderabad for $750,000 while Delhi Daredevils pocketed Gautam Gambhir for $725,000.

The all-rounders shone brightly. Cameron White, an unknown Australian all-rounder whose base price was only $100,000, was picked up by the UB Group which owns the Bangalore franchise for half a million dollars. That is much more than what Ricky Ponting ($400,000) and Mathew Hayden ($375,000) went for.

Another strong performer was Yusuf Pathan. His base price was also $100,000 but he went for as much as $475,000.

Irfan Pathan, though, got the most among this category, Preiti Zinta's Mohali team finding it fit to pay him that much.

What is surprising is that Australian pace star Glenn McGrath was one of the unsold players. Delhi bought him for his base price of $350,000. Pakistani wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal only going for $150,000 is another surprise.

"The fact that only four foreign players were allowed for each team helped the Indian players. It also helps the company achieve its goal of allowing youngsters an opportunity to shine on the big stage," said UB Group chairman Dr. Vijay Mallya Mallya.

Perception and performance are also key. That is why Munaf Patel who has been plagued with injury only got $275,000. It also explains the 150,000 paid for Jaffer who struggled in Australia.

There was an overwhelming response to the first ever player auction of this kind. Of the 79 players, 77 players were sold at the base price or above. Only two were withdrawn – Ashwell Prince and Mohammed Yousuf.

Shah Rukh Khan's Kolkata team was the most talked about, with its battery of pace attack in Shoaib Akhtar, Ishant Sharma and Omar Gul. Then you have a situation where Australian captain Ricky Ponting will have to bat along with 'Dada' Ganguly who will lead the side.

Shah Rukh noted that this was the first time he was ever at an auction. "It was a nice game to play. I am friends with many of the franchisees and there was a lot of camaraderie and sportsmanship. I also expect sport to be given a fillup. It is right that we start with cricket due to the economics. However I am sure that as time goes along me and the other franchisees will look at other sports. Dr. Mallya is already doing that."

Khan used to play three sports - cricket, soccer and hockey before getting injured when he was young. "Regardless of whether the IPL works or not, I have enough passion to feel successful at trying to create something new. If the platform is successful, I will feel fulfilled. It is important that the culture of sport be brought in as a profession. It is important for us to play our part in spreading sport as it is healthy for kids. With the IPL it will be the start to offering youngsters a viable opportunity," he said.

Mallya drew parallel from the English Premier league. "It was only a matter of time before Indian cricket went beyond the Duleep Trophy and Ranji Trophy. The auction has been an exciting process and all the franchisees got what they wanted. IPL is the best thing that has happened to Indian cricket. It offers youngsters the chance to make money and also to improve their skill sets by playing alongside international players," he said.

Bangalore, the team Mallya owns, will be holding the opening ceremony in April. "I look forward to welcoming the teams, the BCCI and ICC. I would like to conclude by saying that while there is a business objective for our involvement in IPL there is also a sporting objective. We are also hoping to contribute to the develop of youngsters in sport," Mallya said.

It is important not to look at the IPL from a regional point of view. "The IPL is meant for the cricket lovers across the country. Each team will have separate character and identity, which we will all be working on. Fans identify with a team based on its character," said Khan.

IMG helped the BCCI organise the auction.

Team List

Here is the complete list of the players of each team and the money that they are being paid. The price mentioned is for one year and the contract is for three years. However, franchisees have a window in February to trade players if they wish.

Jaipur: Shane Warne ($450,000), Graeme Smith ($475,000), Younis Khan ($225,000), Kamran Akmal ($150,000), Yusuf Pathan ($ 475,000), Mohammad Kaif ($675,000), Munaf Patel ($275,000), Justin Langer ($200,000)

Chennai: MS Dhoni ($1.5 million), Muttiah Muralitharan
($ 600,000), Matthew Hayden ($375,000), Jacob Oram ($675,000), Stephen Fleming ($350,000), Parthiv Patel
($325,000), Joginder Sharma ($225,000), Albie Morkel
(US$675,000), Suresh Raina ($650,000), Makhaya Ntini
($200,000), Michael Hussey ($350,000)

Mumbai: Sachin Tendulkar (icon), Sanath Jayasuriya ($975,000), Harbhajan Singh ($850,000), Shaun Pollock
($550,000), Robin Uthappa ($800,000), Lasith Malinga
($350,000), Dilhara Fernando ($150,000), Loots Bosman ($75,000)

Bangalore: Rahul Dravid (icon), Anil Kumble ($500,000), Jacques Kallis ($900,000), Zaheer Khan ($450,000), Mark Boucher (US$450,000), Cameron White (US$ 500,000), Wasim Jaffer ($150,000), Dale Steyn ($325,000), Nathan Bracken ($325,000), Shivnarine Chanderpaul ($200,000)

Hyderabad: Adam Gilchrist ($700,000), Andrew Symonds
($1.35 million), Herschelle Gibbs (US$575,000),
Shahid Afridi ($675,000), Scott Styris ($175,000),
VVS Laxman ($375,000), Rohit Sharma ($750,000),
Chamara Silva ($100,000), RP Singh ($875,000),
Chaminda Vaas ($200,000), Nuwan Zoysa ($110,000)

Mohali: Yuvraj Singh (icon), Mahela Jayawardene (US$475,000), Kumar Sangakkara ($700,000), Brett Lee ($900,000), Sreesanth ($625,000), Irfan Pathan (US$925,000), Ramesh Powar (US$170,000), Piyush Chawla
(US$ 400,000), Simon Katich (US$200,000), Ramnaresh
Sarwan (US$225,000)

Kolkata: Sourav Ganguly (icon), Shoaib Akhtar (US$
425,000), Ricky Ponting ($400,000), Brendon McCullum
(US$700,000), Chris Gayle ($800,000), Ajit Agarkar
($330,000), David Hussey (S$ 675,000), Ishant Sharma
($950,000), Murali Kartik ($ 425,000), Umar Gul ($150,000), Tatenda Taibu ($125,000)

Delhi: Virender Sehwag (icon), Daniel Vettori ($625,000), Shoaib Malik ($ 500,000), Mohammad Asif ($650,000), AB de Villiers ($ 300,000), Dinesh Karthik ($525,000), Farveez Maharoof ($ 225,000), Tillakaratne Dilshan ($250,000), Manoj Tiwary ($675,000), Gautam Gambhir ($725,000), Glenn McGrath ($350,000).

See also...

Indian Premier League

Indian Premier League franchises

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