The IPL auctions are round the corner and a lot of discussions are on at present on which team would be spending how much on their acquisitions. As we have seen several times in the past, the IPL franchises don’t hold back and spend astronomical sums on different players, even the unknown ones. Sometimes those purchases work, sometimes they don’t.
While it remains to be seen how things go this year, we have gone down memory lane and prepared a list of the five biggest purchases in the IPL auction history; players who made headlines because of the enormous sum they were acquired for. Take a look.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Chennai Super Kings, IPL 2008:
When the IPL commenced, almost every team was making a beeline to grab their hands on Mahendra Singh Dhoni, fresh from his exploits in the successful ICC World T20 2007 stint in South Africa. It was the Chennai Super Kings who finally grabbed the most successful Indian captain ever with a whopping sum of USD 1.50 million. Dhoni went to make the Chennai side one of the most successful ones in IPL history in the following years and with it also became the most successful IPL captain.
Yuvraj Singh, Delhi Daredevils, IPL 2015:
The dashing left-hander has always been one of the most fancied players in the IPL auctions, despite his limited returns. After a decent stint with the Royal Challengers of Bangalore in 2014, Yuvraj was purchased for an astronomical amount of USD 2.67 million by the Delhi Daredevils in the 2015 auctions. Even though Yuvraj was a big name, the amount left everyone stunned. Unfortunately, Yuvi was way below par in the season.
Ravindra Jadeja, Chennai Super Kings, IPL 2012:
To invest an amount of USD 2 million on a spin bowling all-rounder who had not yet established himself in the national side was a move that raised many eyebrows. Ravindra Jadeja had been pretty good for the Rajasthan Royals in the initial edition and had withered away a bit after that. But the Chennai franchise was confident of their purchase. Though Jadeja underperformed in the 2012 edition, he went on to become a solid force for the Chennai franchise in the seasons to follow.
Gautam Gambhir, Kolkata Knight Riders, IPL 2011:
Gautam Gambhir, the gutsy left-handed opener, was a very good batsman. But to fetch an amount of USD 2.4 million seemed like overindulgence on the part of the Kolkata Knight Riders who bought him in the 2011 edition. However, this move turned out to be a fortune-changing one for the Kolkata franchise who had been struggling at the bottom of the league table prior to this. Gambhir not only became their backbone at the top of the order but also captained the side with vigor and passion. A very productive purchase indeed.
Pawan Negi, Delhi Daredevils, IPL 2016:
This will go down as one of the biggest logic-defying purchase in the IPL auction history. Pawan Negi, a little-known spin-bowler with decent batting capabilities was bought for a colossal USD 1.25million in last year’s auctions by the Delhi Daredevils. The purchase turned out to a massive disaster as Negi only featured in eight games where he mustered 57 runs and picked up just one wicket. One can’t fault Negi for the performance but one has to question the logic of the Delhi franchise, who have had a history of failed purchases, for spending such an incredible sum on a relatively unknown player.