There were quite a few firsts as well, as far as an IPL auction is concerned, and they of course became big talking points.
Image credit: BCCI/IPL
TimesofIndia.com here takes a look at 6 such highlights of what could have been the last IPL mega auction:
1. As many as 11 players sold for Rs 10 Crore plus – The most ever
This auction saw as many as 11 players being bought for a price tag of Rs 10 Crore or more. This has happened for the first time in an IPL auction. The two players who made the headlines the most were two players which their older franchises spent a lot of money on to buy back.
23 year old wicket-keeper and opening batsman Ishan Kishan, who was sold for a whopping Rs 15.25 Crore, as the Mumbai Indians went all out to buy him back and medium pacer Deepak Chahar, who went back to the Chennai Super Kings for Rs 14 Crore.
The foreigner who made the biggest headlines was Englishman Liam Livingstone. A 28 year old batting all-rounder who is trying to make his way back into national reckoning in T20 cricket and played the 5 match series vs the West Indies in the Caribbean recently. He was picked up for Rs 11.50 Crore by the Punjab Kings.
Seven of the eleven most expensive players sold at this auction were Indians.
The 11 players who were sold for Rs 10 Cr or more in this auction are: Ishan Kishan (Rs 15.25 Cr – MI), Deepak Chahar (Rs 14 Cr – CSK), Shreyas Iyer (Rs 12.25 Cr – KKR), Liam Livingstone (Rs 11.50 Cr – PBKS), Shardul Thakur (Rs 10.75 Cr – DC), Wanindu Hasaranga (R 10.75 Cr – RCB), Harshal Patel (Rs 10.75 Cr – RCB), Nicholas Pooran (Rs 10.75 Cr – SRH), Lockie Ferguson (Rs 10 Cr – GT), Avesh Khan (Rs 10 Cr – LSG), Prasidh Krishna (Rs 10 Cr – RR).
2. CSK spent more than Rs 10 Crore for the first time ever on a single player at an auction
Four time champions Chennai Super Kings had never spent more than Rs 10 Crore on a single player in a player auction. That changed this time, with the yellow brigade choosing to spend as much as Rs 14 Crore to buy back medium pacer Deepak Chahar. This price tag also made Chahar the most expensive Indian bowler ever.
Chahar began his IPL journey with the Rajasthan Royals and then also played for the now defunct Rising Pune Supergiant. He was bought by CSK ahead of the 2018 season and has become almost synonymous with the 4 time champions, thanks to MS Dhoni using him very wisely, especially in the powerplay overs, though some might still question the huge price tag.
In the last season in 2021, Chahar took 14 wickets in 15 games at an economy rate of 8.35. Overall in his IPL career he has so far taken 59 wickets in 63 matches.
Interestingly Chahar’s per season salary now (Rs 14 Crore) will be Rs 2 Crore more than what CSK retained MS Dhoni for (Rs 12 Crore).
3. MI spent over Rs 10 Crore on a single player for the first time at an auction
Mumbai Indians were another team which had never bid more than Rs 10 Crore on a single player at an IPL auction. That also changed in this auction, with Mumbai spending the most amount of money on a single player across all 10 teams. The five time champions were determined to buy back wicket-keeper batsman Ishan Kishan, who will open the batting for them, along with captain Rohit Sharma. Ishan was the first player MI bought at the auction this time.
MI spent as much as Rs 15.25 Crore on Ishan, making the most expensive buy overall of this auction, across both days.
With a bid of Rs 15.25 Crore, Ishan’s price tag also became the second most expensive ever for an Indian player in an IPL auction, behind only the Rs 16 Crore that Delhi paid to buy Yuvraj Singh ahead of the 2015 season.
Ishan overall earned over 7 times his base price of Rs 2 Crore.
Interestingly, Ishan’s price tag of Rs 15.25 Cr is just Rs 75 lakh less than what Mumbai retained their 5 time title winning captain Rohit Sharma for (Rs 16 Crore).
I’m coming home @mipaltan 💙 https://t.co/PBDAxPfZD7
— Ishan Kishan (@ishankishan51) 1644665875000
4. Why were the Mumbai Indians mostly subdued through the auction?
One of the biggest talking points of the two day auction this time was the most successful team of all time – the Mumbai Indians -being rather subdued through the auction process. Initially they were making a few bids, but then kept pulling out once the bidding reached a certain figure.
It became quite evident later on day 2, why MI were adopting this strategy, when they spent as much as Rs 8 Crore to buy Jofra Archer – a player who will in all probability not even be available for the 2022 season due to injury. But MI wanted to bank on Archer for the long term. These are three year contracts and Archer should be available from the 2023 season onwards and will make quite a lethal bowling pair with Jasprit Bumrah, who MI retained ahead of the auction.
Between Ishan Kishan and Jofra Archer, MI spent as much as Rs 23.25 Crore on just two players. They had also identified very specific players who they wanted to bid big for, like 18 year old uncapped South African Dewald Brevis, who is nicknamed Baby ABD, and was the Man of the tournament of the recently concluded ICCU-19 World Cup, scoring 506 runs in 6 innings (avg of 84.33) and taking 7 wickets. MI picked up Brevis for as much as Rs 3 Crore. This further explained their strategy of not aggressively bidding for most players, since they were just not on their radar.
Most of the players Mumbai Indians bought were towards the latter half of the auction on Day 2 from the uncapped lists. The strategy will of course be for the team. which has a great structure of grooming young talent to guide these youngsters and shape some of them into becoming the next Jasprit Bumrah or Hardik Pandya.
The MI squad has as many as 11 uncapped Indian players.
As a result of this, the MI squad overall is not really a star studded one, but knowing their work ethic and discipline, they will be focused on making this squad a winning one.
Overall, Mumbai spent Rs 89.90 Crore out of their kitty of Rs 90 Crore on retentions and auction bids.
The MI squad is a maximum strength 25 member one, with 17 Indians and 8 foreigners. The 8 foreigners that the 5 time champions have in their squad are: Kieron Pollard (retained), Dewald Brevis (SA), Jofra Archer (Eng), Daniel Sams (Aus), Tymal Mills (Eng), Tim David (Singapore), Fabien Allen (WI) and Riley Meredith (Aus).
5. Avesh Khan – The most expensive uncapped player in IPL auction history
That Avesh Khan is inching closer to getting his maiden India cap is no secret. He first started making big headlines as a bowler playing in India’s u-19 World Cup squad in the 2016 edition of the tournament. Interestingly he was part of India’s 2014 campaign as well in the U-19 World Cup as a 17 year old. Avesh could already clock 140kmph since he was about 17 and has made steady strides since then.
It wasn’t really a very big surprise then to see one of the two new teams – Lucknow Super Giants – splurge as much as Rs 10 Crore on Avesh, who had a base price of Rs 20 lakh. This also made the fast medium bowler from Madhya Pradesh the most expensive uncapped player ever bought in an IPL auction.
Avesh made his IPL debut in 2017 and so far in his IPL career has taken 29 wickets in 25 matches.
आ रहे हैं, लखनऊ की शान में चार चाँद लगाने, आवेश खान 🤩@Avesh_6 #TATAIPLAuction #IPLAuction #LucknowSuperGiants https://t.co/Bm2ymkYU76
— Lucknow Super Giants (@LucknowIPL) 1644744995000
A revelation last season, a sensation this auction! 😊 Welcome to the Super Giants, @Avesh_6! 🔝#TATAIPLAuction… https://t.co/iW74Vwjrs0
— Lucknow Super Giants (@LucknowIPL) 1644681207000
Avesh Khan 👉🏼 The most expensive uncapped player at an #IPLAuction 👏🏼We’ll miss our Indore Express 🥺Good luck w… https://t.co/adJoxKA2sJ
— Delhi Capitals (@DelhiCapitals) 1644681357000
A New journey 🧿@LucknowIPL https://t.co/OtpKH4MyiN
— K L Rahul (@klrahul11) 1644817301000
Very Fast & Extremely Furious. 🔥🔥🔥#TATAIPLAuction #IPLAuction #LucknowSuperGiants https://t.co/H9Cr63YVUq
— Lucknow Super Giants (@LucknowIPL) 1644750456000
6. End of an era – No takers for Mr IPL, Suresh Raina
With this being said to be the last IPL mega auction, all the teams were looking to build their squads for the long term. If indeed there are no more mega auctions, something the older franchises have wanted for a while in order to retain the core of their team, something they spend a lot of money to nurture and grow, the squads that have been made will only be tweaked if absolutely necessary or if certain players are just not working for certain teams. Going ahead though, the players who have been bought now are the ones the teams will focus on completely.
And someone like Suresh Raina did not feature in the plans of any of the 10 teams.
Raina, who at one time was the highest run-getter of the IPL, till Virat Kohli overtook him, has been synonymous with the IPL and with the Chennai Super Kings. At one time Raina also held the record of never having been out of the playing XI of a single IPL match for CSK (till the 2018 edition after 158 games for CSK) and picked up the tags of Mr IPL and Chinna Thala in Tamil Nadu (right hand of the leader).
He is still the fourth highest run getter in IPL history, with 5528 runs, behind only Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma.
Over the weekend though, Raina, for the first time ever failed to find a single bid from any team in an IPL auction.
Since the league began in 2008, Raina missed only the 2020 season when he returned home from the UAE, citing personal reasons. His return to the CSK camp last season wasn’t a great one. He managed to score just 160 runs in 12 matches at an average of under 18.
Unless Raina, who retired from international cricket in 2020, is now signed as a replacement player by a team, his glorious IPL journey might have come to an end.
Super Thanks for all the Yellove memories, Chinna Thala!🥺 #SuperkingForever 🦁 https://t.co/RgyjXHyl9l
— Chennai Super Kings – Mask P😷du Whistle P🥳du! (@ChennaiIPL) 1644767081000
Changing times. One of the greats of the IPL, Suresh Raina goes unsold.
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) 1644653148000
Sad not to see a single bid for Mr IPL @ImRaina in the first round.. @IPL #AuctionDay #IPLMegaAuction2022
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) 1644653193000