India's Ishan Kishan fetches $2 million in IPL auction

By: AFP
Published: 09:52 AM, 13 Feb, 2022
India's Ishan Kishan fetches $2 million in IPL auction
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India's rising star Ishan Kishan fetched a whopping $2 million in the auction for the Indian Premier League -- the world's most valuable cricket tournament -- on Saturday.

Five-time champions Mumbai Indians bought back the 23-year-old Kishan, a wicketkeeper-batsman, in a fierce bidding war on a dramatic first day in Bangalore that witnessed auctioneer Hugh Edmeades collapse.

Ten teams, including two new additions in Lucknow Super Giants and Gujarat Titans, started with a total purse of nearly $75 million to spend across two days.

Uncapped pace bowler Avesh Khan hit the jackpot when he attracted a winning bid of $1.32 million  (1.16 million euros, £970,000) from Lucknow as his stock jumped from a base price of $26,500.

Up-and-coming talent, including Shahrukh Khan, a hard-hitting batsman, and Rahul Tewatia, a bowling all-rounder, went to Punjab Kings and Gujarat as each jumped from a base price of $53,000 to bag $1.19 million each.

The left-handed Kishan made his international debut last year. His fee fell short of the Indian record of $2.2 million paid to Yuvraj Singh in the 2015 auction, which sets players' salaries for the tournament.

South Africa's Chris Morris is the most expensive IPL player ever, selling for $2.23 million last year.

The second most expensive player on Saturday was bowling all-rounder Deepak Chahar, bought back by Chennai Super Kings for $1.85 million.

Shreyas Iyer, who stood out with his match-winning 80 as India completed a 3-0 ODI whitewash of the West Indies on Friday, was won by Kolkata Knight Riders for $1.62 million.

Kolkata secured a return for Australia's Pat Cummins, who went to the same team for a record $2.17 million in 2019 but was released last year, for nearly $1 million.

Cummins and Iyer remain Kolkata's options for the captaincy after the team did not retain England's Eoin Morgan -- who led them to the runners-up spot last season.

Pace bowler Harshal Patel, who played just two T20 matches for India last year, went for $1.42 million to Royal Challengers Bangalore, who also got Sri Lankan spinner Wanindu Hasaranga at the same price.

Edmeades -- a former chairman of Christie's in London -- collapsed during the bidding for Hasaranga and organisers said later he was "stable" under medical care.

Veteran sports presenter Charu Sharma took over for the rest of the day.

- Mankad pair reunited -

The auction kicked off with Shikhar Dhawan, the Indian opener going to Punjab Kings for $1.09 million. 

Punjab also got South African pace bowler Kagiso Rabada for $1.22 million.

New Zealand pace bowler Trent Boult also crossed the million-dollar threshold with his $1.06 million signing by Rajasthan Royals, who also won the bidding for Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin.

Ashwin joins England's Jos Buttler at Rajasthan after a sportsmanship row between the two erupted 2019, when the spinner ran out the star batsman at the non-striker's end in a Mankad dismissal.

"We spoke to Jos prior to the auction and just talked through all of our prioritisation of players. Honestly he didn't even think about it," said Rajasthan chief executive Jake Lush McCrum.

"I had to sort of bring it up to check it was okay and he said it's absolutely fine."

South Africa's Faf du Plessis went to Royal Challengers Bangalore while Delhi Capitals got David Warner for $826,000.

West Indies wicketkeeper-batsman Nicholas Pooran went to Sunrisers Hyderabad for $1.42 million. West Indies all-rounder Jason Holder went to Lucknow for $1.16 million.

New Zealand quick Lockie Ferguson went to Gujarat for $1.32 million while England pace bowler Mark Wood will feature for Lucknow for $1 million.

The teams have been bidding for 600 foreign and Indian players in the auction -- which concludes Sunday -- to reset their teams after retaining few of their top players.

The 15th edition of the IPL begins in late March, with the final in May.

AFP

Agence France-Presse is an international news agency.