Ravindra Jadeja, R. Vinay Kumar and Mahela Jayawardene became the top draws while West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell and leggie Sunil Narine were the surprise buys at the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction here on Saturday.
India all-rounder Jadeja lived up to his ‘hot property’ tag at the auction with Chennai Super Kings buying him for $2 million while fast bowler R. Vinay Kumar was snapped up by Royal Challengers Bangalore for an unexpected $1 million.
Jadeja was bought by the Super Kings in a hotly contested battle with Deccan Chargers. Jadeja, who had a base price of $100,000, was bagged in a tie-breaker between Super Kings and Chargers.
The $2 million budget cap for the auction meant the Super Kings have spent all their money on a single player and cannot participate in the auction any more.
Chargers spent $650,000 on Indian wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel, whose base price was $200,00. Chargers went aggressively after Patel, who attracted bids from Mumbai Indians, Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals.
Fast bowlers Shantakumaran Sreesanth, Rudra Pratap Singh and spinner Ramesh Powar were bought by Royals, Mumbai Indians and Kings XI respectively for $400,00, $600,000 and $1,60,000.
Amongst the Sri Lankans, captain Jayawardene, who led the terminated franchise Kochi Tuskers last year, remained the second biggest draw of the auction with Delhi Daredevils dishing out $1.4 million for the marquee player. Retired Sri Lanka spinner Muttiah Muralitharan ($200,000) was picked up by Royal Challengers for $220,000.
West Indies players were sought after too. Russell was bought by Daredevils for $450,000, nine times his base price. Daredevils secured Russell after a stiff battle against Chargers.
Extensive bidding for leggie Narine surprised many. Knight Riders coughed up $700,000 for the West Indian, who had a base price of $50,000. Mumbai Indians were the other franchise interested in him.
Speedster Mitchell Johnson, batsman Brad Hodge and left-arm spinner Brad Hogg were the three Australians who went under the hammer.
Mumbai Indians bought Johnson for his $300,000 base price. Hogg ($100,000), who made a comeback into the national Twenty20 side at 40, was purchased by Royals for $180,000. Royals also paid a handsome $475,000 for Hodge, who had a base price of $200,000.
New Zealand batsman-wicketkeeper Brendon McCullum (base price $400,000) was snapped up by Knight Riders for $900,000 and was the first player to be sold. McCullum was a part of the Knight Riders for the three years before being bought by Kochi Tuskers last year.
India’s veteran batsman V.V.S.Laxman ($400,000) and Irish all-rounder Kevin O’Brien ($50,000) did not find any takers. England fast bowler James Anderson (with a base price of $300,000) was amongst the 32 players who went unsold.(IANS)