IPL auction 2018 | Best signings from the first day of IPL auction

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IPL auction 2018 | Best signings from the first day of IPL auction

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SportsCafe Desk

01/27/2018

The first day of the IPL auction saw some major heartbreak and, surprisingly, an overtly defensive approach from the Chennai Super Kings franchise. However, some franchises managed to steal some biggest names with surprisingly lesser amounts and they are featuring on this list.

Gautam Gambhir

When KKR didn’t retain their all-time leading run-getter and the man who helped them win the championship two times, it was expected that Gautam Gambhir will go for a big money at the auction and a perennially muddled GMR-owned franchise was almost sure to go for him. But never in their wildest dreams, would they expected to get their former skipper back at a minuscule price of 2.8 crores. With a base price of 2 crores, it seemed no one was interested at first, but Rajasthan Royals tried bidding for him before being outwitted by the Delhi Daredevils. A franchise that packs a lot of promise, comprising some of the country's finest young batting talents and a pace unit that has also been well stocked up, Gambhir was the leader that the franchise has always been wishing for. Then again, a player of Gambhir’s calibre is obviously a steal at 2.8 and Delhi will not mind in their move of bringing their former skipper back in the fold once again. It is important to note that, according to KKR director Venky Mysore, Gambhir requested KKR to not use their RTM on him during the auction. 

Mitchell Starc

Considering Eden Gardens has been a far cry from their spin-friendly bowling track days, the Calcutta-based franchise made a conscious decision of stacking their team with some world-class pacers over the years and this year, after retaining the only seam bowling all-rounder, Andre Russell, their task was cut out. While Mitchell Starc was expected to be a huge signing, KKR entered the bidding with a clear-cut theme and snapped the Aussie bowler for 9.4 crores. While it cost them a bit more than expected, it shouldn’t have been forgotten how big a threat the pacer will be once he gets going. Secondly, they were in a fight with Kings XI Punjab, a franchise that entered the auction hall with a huge purse of 67 crores, and to their credit, they didn’t let them secure Starc’s services. He is surely going to be the spearhead of the bowling unit, and if he doesn’t get injured – believe me, he gets injured more often than not – Eden will be a challenge for any visiting team.

Harbhajan Singh

Harbhajan Singh is so Mumbai Indians that he would never associate him with any other franchise, but as truth stands, he is going south this time. CSK may have let go of Ravichandran Ashwin, but Harbhajan turned out to be an absolute steal with the base price. While it is understandable that the offie has not been in his usual wicket-taking self anymore, some things are actually timeless – pretty much like Harbhajan’s miserly overs. To go with his miserly overs, Harbhajan can provide some lower order bat swing as bonus. While CSK were fully defensive in their approach today and it was expected they would try to get the good signings tomorrow, they would surely have been happy on signing the former Indian spinner.

Shikhar Dhawan

It was coming. The Indian opener has made a great opening pair with David Warner and the Sunrisers were almost sure to snap him in the auction. But who would have imagined that he would be purchased by 5.2 cr. Although Kings went all-out for him, they actually wanted to take the price as high as possible so as to reduce Sunrisers’ purse. While the price eventually rose thanks to Mumbai Indians’ hopping in, the 2016 champion managed to snap their former skipper for a minuscule 5.2 crores. The left-handed batsman can give the team a solid top-order batting opportunity and an asset for any franchise in the IPL. Good judgement, SRH. 

Quinton de Kock

This has to be RCB’s steal of the day. De Kock is not just a brilliant batsman but has also been one of the finest wicket-keepers around of late. Kock will also give a boost to the RCB batting line-up as an opener and that will allow Virat Kohli to bat at his usual No.3 position. And realising that DD decided to let de Kock go due to the presence of Rishabh Pant to keep wickets, RCB jumped into the bidding at his base price of two crores. Although Mumbai decided to shoot in, they pulled out immediately and RCB wouldn’t mind it. 

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