The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced a total of 578 aspirants for going under the hammer for the Indian Premier League (IPL) player auction, to be held in Bengaluru on January 27 and 28
The list of 578 cricketers includes at least one cricketer from each of the 12 Test-playing nations, including the recently inducted Afghanistan and Ireland. Besides, the list includes a player each from Canada and Nepal.
Neither wicket-keeper Hamza Tariq of Canada nor young Nepal leg-spinner Sandeep Lamicchane had registered for the auction register, which comprised 1122 players. However, Sportstar understands that the duo was added to the list on the request of the franchises. It will be interesting to see if either of them is picked for one of the 182 slots that are available for all the teams combined.
The IPL governing council has capped the squad strength to 25 players for the 2018 season. With 18 star cricketers having already been retained by all the teams, it remains to be seen if all the available slots would be filled or not.
Ashwin in the first set
Meanwhile, the IPL authorities has also announced the sequence of players to be auctioned. The auction will begin with two sets of eight players each, which have been tagged as “marquee players”. India's R. Ashwin, Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane have been clubbed along with South Africa captain Faf du Plessis, explosive West Indies duo of Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard, Australia speedster Mitchell Starc and England all-rounder Ben Stokes. All these biggies have set a base price of Rs. 2 crore each.
The second set will include India veterans Gautam Gambhir, Harbhajan Singh, Yuvraj Singh; West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Bravo, all-rounders Shakib Al Hasan of Bangladesh and Glenn Maxwell of Australia and international captains Joe Root of England and Kane Williamson of New Zealand. Barring Shakib (Rs. 1 crore), Root and Williamson (Rs. 1.5 crore each) , the base price for the other five stars will be Rs. 2 crore each.
Rajiv Shukla, Chairman, IPL said: “A lot of strategizing and number-crunching is involved before a cricketer is picked at the VIVO IPL Player Auction. The dynamic nature of the auction makes it unpredictable and exciting. The eight franchises have given us an indication of what their core would be with their Player Retentions and the VIVO IPL 2018 Player Auction will be an important step towards the creation of a successful team. The marquee list is full of star players, but I am also looking forward to the uncapped Indian players who have proved their mettle in the earlier editions of the VIVO IPL and are sure to attract high bids.”
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