The various sets for the Indian T20 league auction which is to be held next week in Kochi have been announced.
The players who are expected to fetch the most when bidding begins have been grouped into five category sets according to specialities – batters, all-rounders, wicketkeepers, fast and spin bowlers.
All the players concerned have been set a reserve price of anywhere between INR 0.5 and 2 Crore, although, in a number of cases, they are expected to be sold for a lot more than that.
The first category is batters, with Kane Williamson arguably the best known. The New Zealand captain was retained by the Sunrisers Hyderabad in 2022, and was paid INR 14 Crore. However, despite skippering the team, he had a poor year with the bat and was released by the franchise in November.
However, his leadership ability remains highly prized, and he is still likely to attract a good deal of interest, with possibly his old franchise looking to buy him back.
Mayank Agarwal also finds himself in the same boat, having led the Punjab Kings last season before paying the price for their failure to reach the play-offs. He could find teams looking for an Indian opener interested in him.
England player Harry Brook is entering the auction for the first time, but could find himself in demand, having been part of England’s World Cup winning team, and just scored back to back centuries in test matches against Pakistan.
The player who will potentially go for more money than anybody else is Brook’s England test captain Ben Stokes.
He was the MVP in the 2017 edition of the Indian T20 franchise league playing for the now defunct Rising Pune Supergiant, but has not played in the league since getting injured in the first match of the 2021 campaign for the Rajasthan Royals. He decided to sit out last year’s tournament.
However, he showed in the World Cup final what a big game player he can be, whilst his exploits as England team captain have only burnished his reputation.
Another member of that England winning team, Sam Curran, was named Player of the Tournament for his efforts in Australia, and can look forward to attracting plenty of interest, especially as he has proven his ability to bowl the precious death overs.
Meanwhile, Cameron Green could also find himself in demand, having caught the eye with his power hitting for Australia in their white ball tour of India prior to the World Cup. He is potentially valuable also because he is a good player of spin and offers a medium pace bowling option.
The West Indies had a disastrous World Cup campaign and one of the subsequent casualties was Nicholas Pooran who stepped down as their white ball captain in the aftermath. Like Williamson, he was released by the Sunrisers after the last campaign, despite being one of their more consistent performers, but he can still do a valuable job for any franchise willing to take a chance on him.
Chris Jordan has played in the Indian T20 franchise leagues for various teams since 2022, but was released by the Chennai Super Kings after the last campaign. Brought into the England team for their World Cup semi-final and final after the injury to Mark Wood, he again proved his ability to get through his overs economically and take wickets, whilst remaining a fine fielder.
It is difficult to envisage him going unsold.
Among the spinners entering the auction will be another member of that victorious England team, Adil Rashid, as well as Australian Adam Zampa.
How the auction will work
The auction will comprise of 405 players – 273 from India and 132 from overseas, including four from Associate member countries.
119 of these players have been capped by their various countries.
The auction will begin with the capped players and then moved on to those who remain uncapped (they also have been split up into various categories.
The various franchises each will have differing purses and will have spent months analysing how much they have to spend, where the gaps and weaknesses in their current squads lie, and who is available.
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