The 2014 IPL auction was special on many counts. For the first time the auction was being conducted in Indian National Rupees and not in US Dollars as in the previous editions. Secondly, the teams, probably, had a lower purse at 60 crores each. The number of foreign players permissible in a team was brought down to 9 and the maximum number of players allowed in a team was 27. However, the tight purse as well as the deductions that came into play for retaining players meant that teams had to be absolutely sure of their expenses and some big names were going to miss out. This is what exactly happened!
Chennai Super Kings
CSK started off well by retaining the services of Faf du Plessis and buying Dwayne Smith as a seam bowling allrounder. Brendon McCullum has been listed as a keeper but given Dhoni’s presence and his own decision to give up keeping it will be strange if we see him behind the stumps in the tournament. The team also bolstered its bowling somewhat with old-timers Mohit Sharma and Ben Hilfenhaus and fresh inductions like Ashish Nehra, Samuel Badree and Matt Henry. They now have a total of 13 players and they will be able to spend INR 29000000 tomorrow.
The team that did not retain a single player from 2013 picked up players for almost department. While it retained the services of Kevin Pietersen, Murali Vijay, Manoj Tiwary, Jean-Paul Duminy and Saurabh Tiwary were added to the line-up, thus ensuring a decent mix of Indian and international batting talent. It also bought Dinesh Karthik, who has previously played for the DD and Quinton de Kock as keepers. Laxmi Ratan Shukla was rewarded for a consistent domestic season and James Neesham also got his first shot at IPL. In the bowling department the Delhi team purchased Nathan Coulter-Nile, Mohammed Shami, Jaydev Unadkat and Rahul Sharma. It now has a remaining purse of INR 86000000 and a squad size of 13.
Kings XI Punjab
The other north Indian team in the IPL made some decent acquisitions as well. George Bailey, Shaun Marsh, Cheteshwar Pujara and Virender Sehwag were good buys in the batting department and the team also got 3 very good allrounders in Mitchell Johnson, Glenn Maxwell and Thisara Perera. Lakshmipathy Balaji and Parvinder Awana were bought as well to add to the bowling resources. Now the Punjab team has INR 142000000 in hand and 12 spots in the roster have been taken.
Kolkata Knight Riders
The Kolkata based franchise brought in the two world class allrounders it had in the previous seasons – Jacques Kallis and Shakib Al-Hasan and also Yusuf Pathan, which was a strange choice given his lack of performance. Piyush Chawla was a welcome addition to the squad as were fast bowlers Umesh Yadav and Morne Morkel and seamer Vinay Kumar. Robin Uthappa was a decent choice as a batsman. KKR has now filled up 10 spots in the team and has INR 90000000 in hand. It is expected that the focus will be on batsmen and allrounders tomorrow.
The IPL champs from 2013 did not make too many purchases but were fairly astute in all their selection. Mike Hussey was a very good choice to replace the experience of Tendulkar and Corey Anderson is obviously the hottest allround prospect going around in world cricket right now. The services of Pragyan Ojha were retained and old warhorse Zaheer Khan was brought back to the fold. Newcomer Josh Hazlewood could very well prove to be a worthy addition to the quick bowling ranks of the Mumbai based team. They now have 10 players in the team and an amount of INR 51500000 to spend tomorrow.
The intelligence of the brains trust of Rajasthan Royals shone through in this year’s auction as well. Retaining Brad Hodge was a good choice and Abhishek Nayar and Steven Smith were good choices for the slots of allrounders. Tim Southee and Ben Cutting were good choices for the quick bowling department but Kane Richardson was a surprise choice. The Jaipur team has 11 players in all and a remaining purse of INR 121000000.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
As had been expected beforehand RCB did go for Yuvraj Singh and it also got young Aussie batsman Nic Maddinson. Parthiv Patel as the wicketkeeper was a good addition to the team. In the bowling department Ravi Rampaul and Muttiah Muralitharan came back to the team while Mitchell Starc, Ashok Dinda and Varun Aaron were added to the team. The Bangalore team now has INR 18000000 left and has filled up 12 of the available spots.
The newest entrant to the IPL has been a good buyer and this year was no exception either. The Hyderabad based outfit significantly bolstered their batting with exceptional buys like David Warner and Aaron Finch. Venugopal Rao could well turn out to be a surprise choice. Allrounders Darren Sammy, Irfan Pathan, Moises Henriques, Amit Mishra, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar were good additions to the team as well. SRH also retained the services of Ishant Sharma and added Jason Holder to the seam bowling ranks. The team has INR 84000000in the kitty and has picked 13 players in all.
What could happen tomorrow?
Most of the teams will be looking to complete their squads tomorrow with the players that went unsold today. However, there is also a good chance that the owners will look to explore their options with newer names that would cost less but would still have the talent to pull it off. One thing is for sure, the second day will be infinitely more exciting than the first one, which was uninspiring for a fair amount of time in the middle – if the first day was played like an ODI expect a T20 blitz tomorrow!