B. Sai Sudharsan was the big winner at the first-ever Tamil Nadu Premier League player auction on Thursday.
.Lyca Kovai Kings bought the left-handed top-order batter for a record sum of ₹21.60 lakh, getting back the player it released before the auction.
Incidentally, Sudharsan will earn more in the TNPL than in the IPL, where Gujarat Titans picked him up at his base price of ₹20 lakh last year.
Since its inception, the TNPL has been using a player draft system. But after six editions, it decided to go for an IPL-style auction, with each team having a purse of ₹70 lakh.
The other big winners of the auction were brothers R. Sanjay Yadav and R. Sonu Yadav.
Chepauk Super Gillies signed the elder sibling, Sanjay, a left-arm orthodox all-rounder, for ₹17.60 lakh. Sonu, a medium-pace all-rounder, was signed by Nellai Royal Kings for ₹15.20 lakh, with the brothers swapping teams from last year.
In the first set, international cricketers went under the hammer, with all-rounder Vijay Shankar fetching ₹10.25 lakh from Idream Tiruppur Tamizhans while Siechem Madurai Panthers bought Washington Sundar for ₹6.75 lakh.
Dragons skipper R. Ashwin welcomed the auction format saying, “I always thought the draft wasn’t a fair system. The idea behind the draft is that it distributes the players evenly to teams. But as always, the perception changes, and if a team fails to get a player it wants in a draft, it could affect their combination badly. I hope teams will be evenly matched as this presents an opportunity to create a level playing field.”
Kovai Kings skipper M. Shahrukh Khan said, “Sai (Sudharsan) has been an important member for us in the last two years. With his impact in big games, he is a certainty in our team. Since he was released, the plan was to go all out for him as long as possible.”
Players bought on day one of the auction
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