Bengaluru: Eight teams of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 10 on Monday will bid to rope in the best talents of the cricketing world as they will look to acquire key players for one of the most keenly awaited and watched sporting events globally.
The eight franchises will have a total of Rs143 crore to spend on the auction which can be utilized to buy up to 76 players.
In a significant move, Mahendra Singh Dhoni was on Sunday removed as captain of Rising Pune Supergiants and replaced by Australian Steve Smith, ending his innings as skipper in both international and franchise cricket, a PTI report said on Sunday.
Dhoni, who had stepped down as India’s limited-overs captain to snap his international run as skipper earlier this year, will, however, continue to be a part of the Pune franchise as a player.
Kolkata Knight Riders are expected to be one of the key teams to watch out for after the Shah Rukh Khan-promoted franchisee released 13 players from its squad after the last season. Kings XI Punjab have the largest remaining budget of Rs23.25 crore, which it can use to buy up to eight players.
The 2017 IPL will see around 351 players eligible for auction. Each squad can have up to 27 players.
The league will conduct a mega auction next year, coinciding with the return of the Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings franchises which were banned for two years following match fixing allegations, Mint reported.
The total salary payable by a team to its players is capped at Rs66 crore a year.
The auctions this year will see players like former England skipper Kevin Pietersen opting out of the IPL, while new faces like Alex Hales, Tymal Mills and Ben Stokes are likely to be bought by the cash-rich league.
However, Indian players have set a far more conservative reserve price compared to some of their international colleagues. Eoin Morgan and Mitchell Johnson have set their reserve prices at Rs2 crore each, the highest possible reserve price, while Trent Boult, Kyle Abbott and Jason Holder have set their reserve prices at Rs1.5 crore each.
In comparison, Indian fast bowler Ishant Sharma is the only one to have set his reserve price above Rs50 lakh. Indian players were expected to keep their prices low to ensure that money does not impede their chances of playing in the league. Even players from Afghanistan have signed up to be part of the auctions this year.