IPL 2017 Auction Wrap Up: The Best, the Worst and the Shocking

Lasting a total of six hours, this was still the shortest IPL auction to date. Despite that, there was some interesting action including the most expensive overseas player and the World #1 T20 bowler not getting picked up.

There was also plenty of interest in all-rounders but let’s make it clear first up that recent history doesn’t agree with the value teams put on all-rounders.

In 2016, Sunrisers Hyderabad won the IPL on the back of Warner & Dhawan with the bat and Bhuvneshwar & Musafizur with the ball – all specialists. In 2015, Mumbai Indians relied on Simmons & Rohit with the bat, Malinga, McClenaghan & Bhajji with the ball – all specialists. In 2014, Kolkata Knight Riders relied on Uthappa with the bat and Narine with the ball – both specialists, not all-rounders.

With this in mind, here are some of the highlights of yesterday’s IPL 2017 auction.

Best 3 Buys (in terms of Value for Money)

  1. Jason Roy: After going unsold in the first round, Jason Roy was snapped up by Gujarat Lions for his base price of just Rs. 1 Crore. His Career T20 average is nearly 30 and strike rate over 144. Oh, and he’s currently in fine form in the PSL, with 173 runs from 5 innings including 2 half-centuries at the time of writing this article.
  1. Mitchell Johnson: Johnson knows a thing or two about the IPL and Mumbai picked him up for his base price of just Rs. 2 Crore. He was valued at 6.5 Crore by KXIP in 2014, so this is a steal. He knows Mumbai well; he was key to their 2013 title campaign with 24 wickets at an economy rate just over 7 runs/over. Mumbai now have Johnson, Malinga and McClenaghan, a more than handy pace trio.
  1. Ankit Bawne: If you’re wondering “who?” – you’re not alone. This 24-year old is not a marquee pick, but he was perfect for the Delhi Daredevils. DD needed a domestic batting boost, and to get a batsman with a T20 average of 33.15 at a strike rate of nearly 130 for just 10 Lakhs is a steal.

Worst 3 Buys (in terms of  Value for Money)

  1. Ben Stokes: Maybe a controversial pick, but 14.5 crore for Stokes was just pure hype and adrenaline, he is nowhere near worth that. No IPL Experience, not available for the entire season (due to international duty). In his most recent T20 series vs. India, he hit only 46 runs and picked up 2 wickets in 3 matches. Also, Pune will have a selection struggle; with Smith, Faf and Zampa almost guaranteed to play, Stokes will steal a spot from Mitchell Marsh. Not worth 14.5Cr.
  1. Trent Boult: Kolkata Knight Riders snapped up Boult in a bidding war that set his value at 5Crore. While KKR had plenty of room for overseas players, and are looking for someone to fill Andre Russell’s shoes, Boult was an odd pick. He has only played 8 IPL matches in 2 seasons, 1 in 2016, and had an average past 12 months for NZ. A steal at 1 Crore, a bad pick at 5 Crore.
  1. Karn Sharma: 5 years ago, Karn was touted as a potential all-rounder for Team India, handy with both bat and ball. Sadly, in 2016, he picked up 0 wickets in 5 matches and scored only 36 runs with the bat, leading him to be let go by the Sunrisers Hyderabad. Mumbai grabbed him for Rs. 3.2 Crore in a bidding war, far higher than his worth.

Most Shocking Unsold Players

  1. Imran Tahir: Not much to say here; it made sense for Delhi Daredevils to let go of him after his weak 2016 IPL, and given Delhi has Mishra as a leggie, but Tahir has a stellar record in limited overs cricket that would have made him an asset to any side. Oh, and he’s the #1 ranked T20 bowler in the world right now.
  1. David Wiese: This South African all-rounder bats at a strike rate greater than 150 and has nearly 120 T20 wickets. In 2015, for RCB he had a couple of good knocks and snagged 16 wickets; for a 30 Lakh starting price we expected him to get picked up.
  1. Parvez Rasool: He has a limited IPL record, with only 2-4 games in each of the past 4 years, but Rasool has a handy T20 bowling economy rate and can bat a bit too. As a domestic spinner, he would have been an asset to squads who focused disproportionately on their overseas buys.

So that’s it! Stay tuned to 1Tip1Hand for lots more about the IPL between now and the first game, which kicks off at 8pm IST on Wednesday, April 5th, 2017.

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A Beginner’s Guide to the IPL Auction Process

We’re still 9 weeks away from the start of IPL 2017, but in three days the IPL teams (with their coaches and thinktanks) will get together in a giant meeting room to bid for players to add to their squads. That’s right, IPL auction season is upon us!

For the uninitiated, here’s a quick beginner’s guide to the IPL Auction Process.

What is it, exactly?

Each year in February the IPL hosts an auction process where teams get to boost their squads. They bid for players not currently attached to a team, and the highest bidding team gets the player.

Why do they need more players?

Every squad must have between 16 and 27 players, with a maximum of 9 overseas players. During the off-season, teams can release players (usually due to underperformance, injury or unavailability), and they’ll use the auction to fill up these slots.

 How much are they allowed to spend?

Each team can spend a maximum of of 66 Crore Rupees on their squad, including current players. This means the amount in their wallet for the Feb 20th auction will vary – for example, Kings XI Punjab have 8 open spots for players but a purse of Rs. 23.35 Crore, while Mumbai Indians have 7 open spots, but a purse of only Rs. 11.55 Crore remaining.

Who needs the least and most players?

KKR finished 4th last season and unloaded a mammoth 6 overseas players, and are now short Andre Russell too. They will buy up to 14 players including 6 overseas.

RCB and Mumbai will only have room to buy up to 7 players in this year’s auction.

What’s the deal with international conflicts?

Each national board has full discretion over players’ schedules; this means for example, England and South Africa are both calling back players in early-mid May to get an ODI series in as prep for the Champions Trophy.

This means even the marquee players might be in lower demand, as international conflicts mean they aren’t available for the entire IPL but would still occupy a spot in the squad.

How many players are up for grabs?

Believe it or not, the list started at 799 players.

Teams submitted wish lists and it dropped to 351 players, including 122 capped internationals.

Remember, combined the teams can only buy a maximum total of 77 players, making the odds of getting bid on just greater than 1 in 5 – yup, nearly 4 of every 5 players in the pool will go unsold in the painfully boring process of having their name announced and no bids. 

Ok, but really, there are obviously some exciting players?

Here’s the fun part. 1Tip1Hand is most excited about a few key players.

3 Most Exciting Marquee Players

·         Ben Stokes (base price 2cr): An asset with bat and ball, Stokes will no doubt stoke (haha!) a bidding war

·         Angelo Mathews (base price 2cr): Although recent form has been average at best, an all-rounder who has leadership experience make Angelo an exciting pick. Sadly, we expect he might not get picked up this year given his reputation as a slow batsman; a T20 strike rate of 120 just isn’t enough

·         Jason Roy (base price 1cr): His tenacity with the bat and recent limited overs experience against India will make him a key pick for any of the 8 IPL sides this year

3 Most Exciting Lesser Known Players

·         Colin de Grandhomme (base price 30lakh): At 30 lakhs, de Grandhomme is a steal with a whopping 170.54 career strike rate. His handy medium pace is a steal for 1-2 overs per game too.

·         Evin Lewis (base price 50lakh): This lesser known West Indian is often in the shadows of stars like Gayle and Russell, but he scored 72% of his runs in boundaries this past year. A strong, cheap opening batsman option.

·         Tymal Mills (50lakh): Mills bowls quick, in the early overs and in the death overs too. His brisk pace and tight economy asset make him a sure shot pick – and bonus over the others English players, he’s not in the England ODI team, so will be around for the entire season.

So there you have it! A beginner’s guide to the 2017 IPL Auction. If you have questions, leave us a comment and we will come back to you.

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India v England T20 Series: Questions over Indian Team Selection

After a successful Test (4-0) and ODI (2-1) Series, Kohli’s India walked into the first T20 at Kanpur full of confidence but lost by 7 wickets. Just as we said in our preview, T20 England is an entirely different beast.

Virat Kohli has an outstanding 63% win rate in test matches (after 22 tests at the helm), an 80% win rate in ODIs (after 20 ODIs at the helm), so will want to quickly turn around his 0% success rate after his first T20 as skipper.

One key element of a skipper’s responsibility lies in team selection, and India’s 7-wicket loss in Kanpur leaves us wondering whether others would have fared better in the starting XI. Today we look at the 4 men from the 15-person squad who didn’t make the cut in Kanpur. Read More …

Preview: India v England T20 Series (and a new fantasy cricket league)

Are you missing your usual fantasy cricket fix? Check out the free-to-enter fantasy cricket league for the three India v England T20s on Fanzoo Sports to play and have the chance to win prizes from Zomato! 

72 days since their first game of cricket in India and after losing both the ODI and the test series, England finally registered a win on the board in the final ODI to salvage some pride. The following statement will therefore come as a bit of a shock: England will fancy their chances in the T20s against India.

Yes, that’s right. Historically India struggled in tests and were dominant at limited overs cricket in the sub-continent, while England was primarily a test-playing nation. The recent story is different. India has grown to be a formidable Test side at home while England (with their batting firepower) are now an excellent T20 side. Having cruised to the World T20 finals less than a year ago, England start the T20 series as favourites.

In recent T20 outings, however, both sides have seen mixed results. India’s second string team scraped through 2-1 against Zimbabwe and lost to the West Indies either side of that series, once in the US and once in the World T20 semi final. England, too, have won just 1 of their last 3 games, beating Sri Lanka by 8 wickets in between losing to the Windies in the World T20 final, and to Pakistan by 9 wickets in September.

Ahead of the three match T20 series between India and England that kicks off Thursday, here are 3 things the 1 Tip 1 Hand Team is watching closely: Read More …

Miami T20 weekend: India v West Indies

This Saturday August 27th and Sunday August 28th, Miami in Florida will host two T20 Matches between India and the West Indies. The BCCI has declared it their goal to make this an annual event, which bodes well for expansion of the sport to new countries.

The first ever cricket international was actually played in North America! In 1844, th "British Empire’s Canadian Province" visited New York to face off against the USA side.Canada racked up 82 all out in 32 overs, dismissed the US for 64, built on their lead and proceeded to win the game by 23 runs. How times change; 82 by an entire side was enough to win in 1844; today Chris Gayle could smash 82 off 5 overs all by himself!

So why is it a big deal to be taking T20s to Florida? For starters, cricket could use the globalization. There are 10 Full Member Nations, another 8 Associate Members with T20I Status. None of them are from North America or South America, and only England, Scotland and Ireland hail from Europe. Several of the biggest, more developed sporting nations in the world have close to zero involvement in cricket today; so taking the game to America is a step in the right direction for the future of the game.

However, it might may be too little too late.

Here are 5 reasons the BCCI will have a tough time cracking the American market.

1. It’s an Over-Saturated Sports Market: In order of size, the United States already has 5 major sports leagues:

a. NFL (American Football)

b. MLB (Baseball)

c. NBA (Basketball)

d. NHL (Ice Hockey)

e. MLS (Soccer)

Soccer is the newest entrant, and is growing aggressively behind the might of the European Soccer Leagues. Is there really room in that packed lineup for a 6th major sport like cricket?

2. The weather can be prohibitive: All 5 of the big sports can be played indoors, with limited impact on the game itself. In fact, American Football and Soccer can both be played even in rain or snow. With the east coast in winter for 6 months of the year, can cricket adapt? Playing indoors would change the pitch, impacting swing, bounce, pace of the outfield, and more.

3. Size of the diaspora: Many would argue that the large South Asian population of the US and Canada is enough to give cricket a head-start in that part of the world. There are 3.4 Million South Asians in the US (as of the last census), which is up 81% from the previous one. While in absolute terms that is no small number, it’s still less than 0.2% of South Asia itself. The BCCI might be too used to having hordes of fans around at all times.

4. The USACA has been suspended: The USA Cricket Association was suspended by the ICC in June 2015 for “governance and financial problems”. This also means a freeze on their funding, which has prevented the US from sending their own cricket team to any tournaments. Is there an example of any sport that has mass following in a country which doesn’t even play it?

5. Time Zones: This weekend’s matches begin at 10am Eastern, or 7.30pm IST – the perfect prime time spot for the Indian TV viewing audience. Unfortunately, it’s not ideal for hordes of Americans to wake up hungover early on a Saturday morning and make the trek to a cricket stadium – or skip work if future games are on weekdays. It will always be a balance between TV and live audiences, and given the sheer numbers, I worry TV will always win.

The BCCI and ICC clearly have an uphill battle on their hands, but we are excited to see them trying to spread cricket to North America!

– Ashwin

What do you think? Let us know in the comments.