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 Bangladesh Test: Preview

In the past seven weeks, India has played against England in all 3 formats . Just over 2 weeks from now, India kicks off a 4-Test series with Australia too. Almost exactly 10 weeks from now, the IPL will kick off with an opening ceremony that is no doubt newsworthy, for better or for worse. That will be followed almost immediately by the Champions Trophy in England. PHEW!

Yet here we are, in the middle of a packed season previewing a standalone test between India and Bangladesh to be played in Hyderabad, from Feb 9-13, 2017.

So how did this Test match find a way into the already crazy calendar? Maybe the BCCI realized that India, despite sharing a border with them, remains the only Test playing nation to have not yet hosted Bangladesh in a Test match. All that is set to change on 9 February 2017.

The last time Hyderabad hosted a test in 2013, Pujara scored a double, Vijay scored a century, Ashwin took a 5-for and Jadeja took 3 wickets in each innings. Kohli will back his top XI and will be looking to warm-up for the upcoming  four test series against Steve Smith’s men with a win here.

Ahead of this (historic?) standalone test, here are a few things we at 1 Tip 1 Hand are watching closely: Read More …

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 …

Five cricketers with surprising records

On 14 August 2016, Pakistan piggy-backed on a brilliant Younis Khan double century to climb to the #1 spot in the ICC Test Rankings for the first time in their history – a truly incredible achievement. Exactly 16 days later, against the same England opposition, the famed Pakistan bowling line-up conceded 444 in just 50 overs, allowing England to set a new record for highest ODI score.

It got us thinking: How can such a great test team (Rank #1) be so poor at ODIs (Rank #9), especially when more than half the Pakistani players play both the formats?

In the spirit of differences, this post looks at 5 players whose records in different formats may surprise you.

#1 Virender Sehwag

Most recently famous for his sass on Twitter, Sehwag’s career ended with him known as a maverick cricketer. His ‘see ball hit ball’ philosophy got him into the ODI Team in 1999 and he only made his test debut three years later.

Yet, despite being known for his quick scoring, he retired from the game as something of a test match legend more than an ODI great.

– Test batting average of 49.34, up there with the greats, compared to an ODI average of 35.05. He has the 4th best Test average for an Indian with 20 tests or more (behind Sachin, Gavaskar and Dravid who are all clearly legends of the game), but is not even in the top 10 for ODIs

– Career test strike rate of 82.23; the highest ever among batsman playing 40 tests or more. His ODI career strike rate of 104.33 is impressive, but only 15th on the all-time list.

#2 Ajinkya Rahane

On paper, Rahane is a test match batsman with a technique few can match. He is often lauded for his temperament, seen as the next Dravid, and thus criticized for inclusion in T20 sides.

And yet, the statistics paint a different picture, showing that he deserves his T20 spot:

– T20 Batting Average of 30.68 – behind only Kohli, Dhoni and Raina among Indian batsmen, all of whom are renowned as T20 experts.

– T20 Half Centuries – Rahane has 30 career T20 fifties in 137 innings. It may not be the highest of all time, but his conversion rate is stellar; he scores a 50 every 4.5 innings, the 2nd best of any Indian player (behind only Kohli who scores a 50 every 4.2 innings) and ahead of T20 stalwarts such as Gambhir (4.7), Dhawan (4.9), Rohit (5.2) and Raina (6.3).

#3 David Warner

Not dissimilar to Sehwag, Warner burst on the ODI and T20 scene for his big hitting and fast scoring in 2009, and didn’t make his Test debut till 2011.

And yet, in just 5 years, his test record is truly noteworthy; he has a stellar ODI record too, but that was expected, the test stats may surprise you:

– Test batting average of 48.63 – The 2nd best test average among current playing Australians, only Steve Smith outshines him on this metric, while his ODI average of 37.53 is not even in the Top 5

– Centuries per Innings – Warner may have only racked up 16 centuries, but, he does so at a rate of 0.16, nearly 1 century in every 6 innings. This is 11th of all time, but 3rd among current players, behind only Younis Khan and Steve Smith. It is a faster rate of century scoring than legends like Gavaskar, Sachin, Lara, Ponting, Mahela… you get the point

#4 Hashim Amla

Amla was handpicked to the South African 5-day side for his Test match potential; thus not making his ODI debut for nearly 4 years after his Test debut! His image as a calm, classy, composed batsman made selectors believe he was the perfect Test batsman.

And yet, though his test batting is outstanding, he has proven to be a class apart as an ODI Batsman:

– ODI batting average of 51.97 – The 3rd highest ODI average of all time among batsmen from test playing nations; he trails only Bevan and de Villiers for this incredible feat.

– Centuries per innings – Nobody even comes close to Amla when it comes to his rate of piling up runs in ODIs. The best by far, Amla scores a century every 5.82 innings. Even Kohli only does so every 6.52 innings, and a legend like Sachin scored a century only every 9.2 innings

– Amla became the fastest to 2,000, 3,000, 4,000, 5,000 and 6,000 runs in ODI Cricket. He is well to break the record to 7,000 as well, with only age limiting his potential given he made his ODI Debut at age 25.

#5 Ravi Ashwin

The only bowler to make this list, Ashwin shot to fame through the IPL, which brought him into the Indian side as a limited overs specialist. He only made his test debut 18 months later.

And yet, after 100 ODIs his limited overs record is nothing to write home about, but he has established himself as a standout in the test arena:

– His bowling strike rate of 51.8 is the best among all Indian bowlers; it is also 5th best among all current players with 20 tests or more. Reminder: Bowling strike rate is number of balls bowled per wicket taken.

– Ashwin takes a 5-wicket haul every 3.67 innings; a truly astounding statistic. Among players who played after 1940, this record is second only to Muralitharan, and 40% better than Herath who is next on the list among active players.

– His figures are not without impact; in his 13 test series till date, he has captured 6 Man of the Series awards. 6 is not only an Indian record, but the rate is by far the fastest too. One award every 2.16 series, this is 62% faster than the next best, Imran Khan, who is undoubtedly a legend of the game.

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