Before the action on the pitch began, it was time to play fantasy cricket for the owners. Cricket fans all across the globe tuned in to find out where will their favourite player end up during the much-awaited IPL Auction.
The auction was a highly competitive one, with all franchises ready to flex their financial muscle to ge the best of players for the 2018 edition of the Indian Premier League. Here we look at the top 5 buys of the auction.
1. Ben Stokes: The flamboyant English all-rounder was the one that everyone wanted and it wasn’t a surprise when Stokes became the most expensive acquisition of the IPL auction. Returning franchise Rajasthan Royals were eager to stamp their authority in this fantasy cricket extravaganza and purchased Stokes for a whopping 12.5 Cr, overtaking his own price of 14.5 crores from the 2017 auction.
2. Jaydev Unadkat: Having featured previously for Delhi Daredevils, Kolkata Knight Riders and Pune Supergiant, Unadkat went for prime value, with Rajasthan Royals shelling out a mind-boggling 11.5 crores. Having previously snapped up Ben Stokes, the Royals were unrelenting in the auction and made sure that their franchise was as close to a fantasy cricket lineup.
3. KL RAHUL: The next big hope of Indian cricket also made his way into the most-expensive list of the auction as Kings XI Punjab left no stone unturned and paid a giant sum of 11 crores to secure the services of the stylish right-hander for their fantasy line-up. Rahul was previously part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore franchise and can also keep wickets which will definitely come handy in the tournament.
4. MANISH PANDEY: Pandey has been a staple feature of the Indian Premier League with both the Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians previously and he was quickly snapped up by Sunrisers Hyderabad for 11 crores. Popular for turning games on its head, the Hyderabad franchise can rely on Pandey for his consistency and swashbuckling style in the upcoming fantasy cricket extravaganza.
5. CHRIS LYNN: Australian batsman Chris Lynn was bought by Kolkata Knight Riders for 9.6 crores. He will fit seamlessly into the Kolkata franchise as he was bought by Kolkata for the previous year as well. Renowned for his big-hitting, Lynn will be crucial factor to the success or failure of the Knight Riders.