The Indian Premier League (IPL) auction of 2018 saw many expensive buys on the first day of the auction as franchisees were looking to get the best of the overseas players in their teams. The best of the lot came in on the first day and we saw many big bids for players from foreign countries.
However, with the purse getting lighter and lighter, franchises started to look for value for money buys and bidding became more thoughtful. The owners made some great bids and got some wonderful T20 format foreign players for very low prices.
Here are our top 5 picks for value for money overseas picks in IPL 2018 auction:
Chris Gayle is the highest run-getter in IPL, he has the most centuries in the tournament, has the highest individual score in the IPL, has hit the maximum number of sixes and fours in the league. He has been a revelation since he started playing for Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2011. His time in Kolkata Knight Riders was a lukewarm one, but being in RCB changed him.
However, after 7 great years with the franchise, RCB decided to not retain him for the IPL 2018. Gayle has been battling with fitness issues and form during the IPL 2017 and was even benched for a handful of games. Gayle found himself back in the auction for IPL 2018.
During the IPL auction 2018, Gayle went unsold for the first two times his name came up. No franchise seemed interested in buying him, even at his base price of 2 crores. It seemed very likely that the IPL record holder will go unsold in one of the biggest shocking moments in the auction. But when his name came up for auction for the last and final time, KXIP bid for him and bought him at his base price.
KXIP will be helped by his experience and his ability to win games on his own. Even if he gets going in 4-5 games in the IPL 2018, it will give KXIP that many wins in the tournament. Definitely a value for money pick for KXIP at 2 crore base price.
Trent Boult was a part of Sunrisers Hyderabad set up last year and SRH chose not to retain him for IPL 2018. Boult has been in form of his life picking his career-best ODI 7 wicket haul against Pakistan and is widely regarded as one of the best bowlers in all the three formats. Boult is also a tremendous fielder anywhere in the field and YouTube is full of videos of Boult’s amazing catches.
Boult had set his base price at 1.50 crores and Delhi Daredevils chose to buy him in the auction for 2.20 crores. Boult is a good replacement for DD, who lost their IPL 2017 performer Pat Cummins to Mumbai Indians.
Quinton de Kock
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) had let go Chris Gayle from their setup for IPL 2018. Though they bought Brendon McCullum in the auction, RCB were looking for a regular keeper who could do the job behind the wickets. Kedar Jadhav had done the job for them in IPL 2017.
RCB decided to go after Quinton de Kock, who was not retained by Delhi Daredevils, for whom, De Kock had done brilliantly well in IPL 2016. De Kock had scored a century against RCB in the 2016 edition and though he missed the 2017 edition due to injury, DD fans hoped he would be retained.
But DD’s mistake became RCB’s gain, as they now have a brilliant young keeper, who can open the innings or bat in middle order. De Kock is an aggressive batsman and safe behind the stumps. RCB grabbed De Kock for 2.8 crores on a base price of 2 crores.
Jos Buttler was amazing at the top for Mumbai Indians in IPL 2017. Though he didn’t keep much in the last edition due to the presence of Parthiv Patel in MI team, Buttler made sure to leave an impact on the franchises. Recently, Buttler showed what he can do in limited overs, as he smashed a brilliant century against Australia in the 5 match ODI series down under and helped England win the series 4-1.
Buttler had set his base price at 1.5 crores. Though Mumbai bid for him, they weren’t aggressive enough and Rajasthan Royals grabbed the England wicketkeeper for 4.4 crores. Though RR has an Indian keeper in Sanju Samson, Buttler will more likely open with Ajinkya Rahane for Rajasthan Royals and RR will hope that he continues his brilliant form in IPL 2018 as well.
Our top pick for the best value for money pick was New Zealand’s, Colin Munro. Munro recently became the only batsman in T20 international format to hit three centuries. Munro’s T20I centuries have come against the likes of Bangladesh (101), India (109*) and the West Indies (104) and all the three centuries came in a 12 month period.
Munro had got some games for Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 2017, but never got a long run with them. However, with Delhi Daredevils picking him, Munro will get a chance to open the batting for them, as he will be replacing De Kock at the top of DD batting order.
Delhi bought him for just 1.9 crores with a base price of 50 lakhs, ultimately making him a steal rather than value for money.