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IPL Auction: The Winners & Losers

The Bridge

Updated: 6 April 2021 8:45 PM GMT

If there is something that can come close to the Indian Premier League (IPL) action, it has to be the player auction! This year's mini-auction was no different. It was not just the players, but the fans of every franchise were up and about looking at who makes the cut for the 2021 IPL cricket.

Going a bit deeper than the obvious headlines, we wanted to see who were the winners and the losers of this auction.

Glenn Maxwell – winner

What's with Maxwell and big IPL bucks? He keeps raising the stakes and much of it has to do with the X-factor he brings to the table. Five teams fought for his signature and the Australian all-rounder was eventually signed up by the Royal Challengers Bangalore. Kolkata Knight Riders, Rajasthan Royals and the Chennai Super Kings were battling for his signature at full throttle. The RCB were the most determined lot signing him for INR 14.25 crore.

With his strong hitting and an ability to bowl at least two overs beside his uncanny knack of hitting attacks out, Maxwell is an ideal pick for the RCB. Regardless of that, the deal is an extremely good one for Maxwell. After his shocking numbers from IPL last 2020 (108 runs, Avg. 15.42, SR 101.88), Maxwell may have dreaded the inevitable. Of course, the perceived skills of Maxwell always increase his price and that's exactly what has happened here.

Rajasthan Royals – winners

Known to be one of the most stringent purchasers in the IPL circuit, the Royals have loosened their purses in this auction and how! They went 'royally' behind all-rounder Chris Morris with all guns blazing. Paying INR 16.25 crore for someone who doesn't command a regular spot with the national team is a gamble. But, there's more to it than what meets the eye. Morris had an average of 30-plus and strike rate of 160-plus in four consecutive seasons between 2015-18 in the IPL. Last season before being sidelined by an injury, his economy rate in the powerplay was 6.26 and 7.03 in the death overs.

It is rare that you get someone who can hit 140kph and above (regularly) with the ball and can strike at 150 and above with the bat. At the same time, his bowling variations make him an attractive asset. Going by how the franchises went after him, it is fair to say that Morris was the darling of the auction making the Royals a winner.

Uncapped players – winners

Not even Riley Meredith or Krishnappa Gowtham would have predicted that they would top the list of expensive buys at this auction but he proceeded all expectations and has featured regular in weekly cricket betting tips as one of the top performers in the IPL. But such is their pull that they ended up being the surprise package of the auction. Gowtham was purchased for a hefty INR 9.25 crore, making him the most expensive uncapped Indian player in the competition history. The unheralded hard-hitting Shahrukh Khan was snapped up by Punjab Kings for INR 5.25 crore after playing a stellar role for Tamilnadu in the recent Syed Mushtaq Ali tournament. Both players had an exponential rise from their base price of INR 20 lakh. Meredith's raw pace caught the eye in the Big Bash League and the Hobart Hurricanes' star pacer was picked up for INR 8.00 crore by the Punjab Kings.

Sunrisers Hyderabad – losers

When you go into the auction with INR 10.75 crore and end up with a balance of INR 6.75 crore without ticking most of the boxes, there ought to be something wrong. They had four slots to fill and tried to go after Shahrukh Khan, but lost out. Putting INR 2 crore on Kedar Jadhav is definitely a gamble, although Mujeeb Ur Rahman for INR 1.5 crore is a smart move. Pairing him with Rashid Khan is an exciting prospect and that is the lone good news coming out of the auction for the Sunrisers.

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