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Aussies sparkle with mega deals at IPL auction

By admin Dec20,2023

New Delhi: Cricket world champs Australia had much to crow about on Tuesday, as their star fast bowlers Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins racked up record bids to enter new franchises at the 17th auction of the Indian Premier League (IPL) being held in Dubai’s Coca-Cola Arena.

Cummins, also Australia’s cricket captain, was sold first to Sunrisers Hyderabad for a record-breaking 20.5 crore. But soon enough, he was pipped to the peak by mate Starc, who went to Kolkata Knight Riders for 24.75 crore after a mighty bidding war with Gujarat Titans. Both comfortably beat the earlier record held by Sam Curran, who picked up by Punjab Kings for 18.5 crore in 2022.

At the auction, 333 cricketers went under the hammer (including 214 Indians), to fill a maximum of 77 slots. Gujarat Titans had the highest player purse with 38.15 crore; Lucknow Super Giants had the lowest at 13.15 crore. The highest reserve price (minimum bid allowed) for a player was 2 crore.

More big money bids were sealed through the day. Mumbai Indians took Hardik Pandya from Gujarat Titans for 15 crore. Pandya, who captained Gujarat for the past two seasons and will now lead MI, will be replaced by Shubhman Gill at the helm of Gujarat Titans. To bring Pandya back, MI released Cameron Green to Royal Challengers Bangalore for 17.5 crore.

Other big bids sealed were for New Zealand all-rounder Daryl Mitchell for 14 crore by Chennai Super Kings, Harshal Patel ( 11.75 crore by Punjab Kings); West Indian fast bowler Alzarri Joseph ( 11.5 crore, Royal Challengers Bangalore), Aussie star opening batsman Travis Head ( 6.8 crore, Sunrisers Hyderabad); and Indian fast bowlers Shivam Mavi ( 6.4 crore, Lucknow Super Giants) and Umesh Yadav ( 5.8 crore, Gujarat Titans).

During the auctions, the price at which the player is bought is considered their salary for one year. So, if a player is bought for 7 crore for four years, he will get 28 crore over that time. Tax is also calculated on this amount. Teams generally come up with an approximate figure as to how much to pay per match, and if a player is not available for the match, the fee structure is adjusted.

Terms of payments for each team are different. Most times, teams give half the fee upfront at the beginning of the season. Purchasing teams also award 10% over and above the fee that a player takes, to cricket boards of international players. For instance, Sunrisers Hyderabad will pay the Australian Cricket Board 2 crore during the year as royalty in addition to what they will pay for Cummins.

According to US-based advisory Houlihan Lokey, Inc., the IPL’s standalone brand value has climbed 80% to $3.2 billion this year, fuelled by the record-breaking $15.4-billion media rights deal secured for the 2023-2027 seasons.

Viacom18 had outbid Disney Star by paying 23,757 crore for IPL streaming rights for the five-year cycle, while Disney Star retained the linear TV rights for 23,575 crore. This is also the first time that two rival networks have held media rights at the same time.

The advisory added that IPL’s media rights have grown at a strong CAGR of 18% from 2008-23, while the growth in absolute terms between the 2017 and 2023 cycles is 196%. When the IPL’s broadcasting fee is compared with other professional leagues in the world on a per-match basis, the IPL is second only to the National Football League (NFL), and fares well above the National Basketball Association (NBA), the English Premier League (EPL) and the Bundesliga.

At the same time, player auctions at the IPL are nowhere close to that of any football league in the world, where millions area doled out per season for top players.

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Published: 19 Dec 2023, 11:59 PM IST

By admin

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