BEN Stokes and Jaydev Unadkat led the list of most expensive buys of the 2018 IPL auction.
The trend saw the Indian franchises going for current form rather than reputation as a number of big-name stalwarts of the T20 format were overlooked.
Stokes was the most expensive player for the second year in a row as Rajasthan Royals picked him up for a whopping Rs 12.5 crore during the auction. India’s promising opener Lokesh Rahul turned out to be the big surprise as Kings XI Punjab picked him for 11 crore. Former IPL superstar Sri Lankan pacer Lasith Malinga failed to get any buyers this time around.
Promising players did manage to get decent contracts, while some seasoned cricket guns were overlooked during the event.
Here is a quick overview of teams and players who were the biggest winners and losers in the auction process.
Top 5 most expensive players in the 2018 IPL auction
Ben Stokes, England’s talismanic all-rounder, did a see small reduction in his paycheck, but will be pleased to play for Rajasthan Royals for $2.4 million AUD in this year’s tournament. There is no doubt that Stokes will try to prove his mettle with the bat and ball to help Royals turn title contenders this year.
Left-arm pacer Jaydev Unadkat who played for the franchise Rising Pune Supergiants last year, was picked by the Royals at a big price of Rs 11.5 crore ($2.2 million AUD). Unadkat produced some exceptional performances with the ball in the previous edition for Pune, taking 26 wickets for the tournament, and was rightly rewarded during the IPL auction.
Australia T20 superstar Chris Lynn bagged a staggering price of Rs 9.6 crore ($1.86 million AUD) through the Kolkata Knight Riders. Glenn Maxwell also was picked up by the Delhi Daredevils for Rs 9 crore ($1.75 million AUD), while Mitchell Starc was also picked by Kolkata for Rs 9.4 crore ($1.8 million AUD).
The other big surprises of the sale were the promising Indian duo of Lokesh Rahul and Manish Pandey. Former Royal Challengers Bangalore player Lokesh Rahul bagged a whopping price of Rs 11.5 crore ($2.1 million), while Manish Pandey was taken by Sunrisers Hyderabad for the same price during the auction.
The most prominent trend was the rise of Afghanistan players in the Indian Premier League as leg-spinner Rashid Khan was retained by Sunrisers Hyderabad for $1.41 million, while his fellow countryman Mohammad Nabi is also in the side for this year’s competition. Promising off-spinner Mujeeb Zadran, who is currently playing for Afghanistan in the ongoing U-19 Cricket World Cup, was snapped up at a price of $400,000 by Kings XI Punjab.
Which big names went unsold at the 2018 IPL auction?
England captain Joe Root headlined a raft of international stars that were unable to attract a bidder in the IPL auction.
It’s suspected that Root, who is England’s test captain and one of the highest-ranked players in the world in the ODI format, was overlooked because of his commitment to the national side.
Sri Lanka’s Lasith Malinga was an interesting omission. Malinga, who had been a super star in this format and a hero for numerous T20 franchises, will now have to seek an alternative entry to the tournament, or miss playing all-together.
The big-hitting ‘universe boss’, Chris Gayle, surprisingly went unsold on day one of the auction, but found a lifeline with the Kings on day two – receiving a much smaller pay check than what he would be used to.
Other prominent names to miss out, for various reasons including injury and diminished form include New Zealand opener Martin Guptil, South African fast bowlers Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn, South African top order bat Hashim Amla and Sri Lankan skipper Angelo Matthews.
Updated 2018 Indian Premier League betting odds
|IPL Team||2018 IPL Sportsbet.com.au odds|
|Royal Challengers Bangalore||+450|
|Kolkata Knight Riders||+550|
|Kings XI Punjab||+600|
|Chennai Super Kings||+800|