Australia’s Jhye Richardson, who on Thursday landed a mega 14 crore IPL deal with Punjab Kings, revealed that he felt nauseous during the bidding but insisted that the deal is life-changing for him. Richardson’s thoughts were echoed by Riley Meredith, who himself landed an 8-crore deal.
With fast bowlers in demand, Jhye Richardson was always going to be a name in the IPL franchise’s radar after having finished as the highest wicket-taker in BBL 10, but not in his wildest of dreams would the Perth-based bowler have expected that he’d go for a whopping 14 crore. Punjab Kings, Royal Challengers Bangalore, and Delhi Capitals all bid vigorously for the 24-year-old speedster and a mad 10 minutes of three-way bidding saw Richardson be snapped up by Punjab for a ludicrous 14 crore.
Even from a neutral viewer’s standpoint, the experience of watching the bid was nerve-wracking, and, as admitted by Richardson himself, it was no less tedious for him. Recalling the 10 minutes where he became a millionaire, Richardson revealed that he felt nauseous and blanked out in disbelief, staring at the television screen. The 24-year-old further revealed that he was overwhelmed with emotion and insisted that the lucrative deal is a life-changing one for him.
"I knew my name came up and I just got this wave of nauseousness, not knowing what to expect. For what to me felt like 20 minutes no one put their paddle up and you are like 'oh, no', you have no idea what's going to happen. Then the first paddle went up and it realistically was probably five or 10 seconds but felt like a lifetime, then after that you just hope it keeps going up,” Richardson was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.
"I don't really remember too much about it. It's almost a blank, I was watching it but felt like I wasn't watching it. After everything that's happened you are obviously really excited then you hit this massive wall, it was pretty late, I had all this emotion, all the adrenaline, a load of messages coming through on my phone and then completely crashed and felt exhausted. I feel like I played a game, mentally exhausted myself. Still sinking in, that's for sure.
"I think it's an amazing result. It's life-changing to be honest. And it's so fresh, it's only happened last night, that I haven't actually had a whole lot of time to process it. It's exciting. It's almost nerve-racking. It's all of those things, that."
Thursday was not just a life-changing day for Richardson, but also for his Australia teammate Riley Meredith, who, at INR 8 crore, became the most expensive uncapped overseas player in the competition’s history. Like Richardson, Meredith too was snapped up by Punjab Kings, who pipped the Capitals to get hold of the 24-year-old tearaway from Hobart. Reflecting on the crazy chain of events, Meredith described the bidding war for him as ‘outrageous’ and admitted that he was left dumbfounded.
"I was trying to figure it out and tell him [Jhye], it went up to a million, two million, unbelievable, and then mine rolled around and it was the same," Meredith said. "Same as Jhye, I probably only got a few hours sleep. I was on Facetime with my girlfriend and couldn't believe what was happening. Like it was fake to be honest, we were pretty dumbfounded.
"It was pretty outrageous really, wasn't expecting too much going on. Was hopeful for a bid or two. It got a bit out of control, luckily enough a couple of teams doing a bit of bidding and it was pretty amazing to go that high."
However, more than viewing his IPL deal as a big pay-day, Meredith is keen to make the most of his opportunity. The Hobart Hurricanes speedster insisted he wants to grab the golden opportunity ahead of him with both hands and further added that he, like several other pacers, was lucky to be in the right place at the right time.
"I'm sure it will be a learning curve and hoping to grab it with both hands.There was a bit of talk before the auction about fast bowlers being in demand this year. It was a good time to not be allocated to a franchise. Bit of right place, right time."