Mitch and Maxwell lead the way for Aussies
Seventeen out of the 35 Aussie players to go under the hammer found a home in the IPL 7 Player Auction, with Mitchell Johnson and Glenn Maxwell coming out on top with a AUD$1.15m and AUD$1.07m payday respectively. Both players will join the Kings XI Punjab in 2014.
Shaun Marsh (AUD$391,000) and George Bailey (AUD$578,000) are also on their way to Mohali, with an eye to anchoring the side's Australian-flavoured middle-order.
Sunrisers Hyderabad have opted for David Warner (AUD$978,000) and Aaron Finch (AUD$712,000) to open the innings, while Mr Cricket himself, Michael Hussey, was picked up by the Mumbai Indians for a princely AUD$888,000.
Brad Hodge still has plenty in the tank according to the Rajasthan Royals, with last year's Champions League runners-up winning the veteran's signature with a AUD$426,000 bid. Hodge will be joined in blue by Steve Smith (AUD$710,000).
The ‘other Mitch’, Starc, defied an injury-ravaged year to be signed by the Royal Challengers Bangalore for AUD$888,000.
Nathan Coulter-Nile thought he was heading to the Rajasthan Royals, before Rahul Dravid's bid for the big quick was deemed to have come after the hammer had been lowered. Instead, the Western Australian was snapped up by the Delhi Daredevils for AUD$755,000.
Tim Paine, Cameron White, Matthew Wade and David Hussey were all among those who missed out early, remaining unsold, while NSW batsman Nic Maddinson was picked up by Royal Challengers Bangalore for the base price of AUD$89,000.
A purple patch for some Aussie quicks late in the day saw Ben Cutting (AUD$142,000), Kane Richardson (AUD$178,000), Ben HIlfenhaus (AUD$178,000) and Josh Hazlewood (AUD$89,000) all pick up contracts, but the second half of day one consisted mostly of teams saving their pennies for day two.
Brett Lee was the notable victim of depleted team funds, with the ageing quick staring down the barrel of his first IPL absence since the tournament's inception in 2008.
Brad Hogg, recently named a member of Australia’s ICC T20 World Cup squad, also missed out.
Earlier in the auction, Yuvraj Singh broke the IPL contract record, being sold to Royal Challengers Bangalore for a whopping AUD$2.49m.
This followed on from the Delhi Daredevils' AUD$1.6m acquisition of Kevin Pietersen and the Kolkata Knight Riders' successful AUD$978,000 bid for recently retired South African international, Jacques Kallis.
Your IPL Auction questions answered
How many players go under the hammer?
More than ever – 514 in fact. That includes 219 capped players (169 Indian, 50 overseas) and 292 uncapped (255 Indian, 37 overseas). Marquee players will be up for auction first, followed by players in their specialist positions: batsman, wicketkeeper, fast bowler, spinner, allrounder.
How many players per team?
No fewer than 16, no more than 27.
What is a marquee player?
These are the big 16, who will be the first to go under the hammer: Virender Sehwag, Kevin Pietersen, Jacques Kallis, Yuvraj Singh, Mahela Jayawardene, Mitchell Johnson, M Vijay, David Warner, George Bailey, Faf du Plessis, Michael Hussey, Dinesh Karthik, Zaheer Khan, Brendon McCullum, Amit Mishra and Darren Sammy.
How much cash does each team have to spend?
Well this year it’s in Indian Rupees, not US Dollars, with the figure being: INR 60,00,00,000 (approx. US$9.67m). That’s more than any previous year.
That money will be reduced depending upon how many players each franchise has retained (see below).
Do teams have any special right to retain their players from 2013?
Franchises are allowed to retain up to five of their 2013 players (max of four capped Indians).
In addition, there is a new system called ‘Right to Match’. Each team will be given a number of ‘Right to Match Cards’, which allows them to retain one of their players by matching the highest bid for that player.
That number varies based on retention: a team that has retained three or more players receives one Right to Match Card; one or two gets two Cards; and zero will allow a team three Cards.
So which teams have kept which players?
Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma, Lasith Malinga, Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Ambati Rayudu
Delhi Daredevils: None
Kings XI Punjab: David Miller, Manan Vohra
Chennai Super Kings: MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Dwayne Bravo
Kolkata Knight Riders: Gautam Gambhir, Sunil Narine
Rajasthan Royals: Shane Watson, James Faulkner, Ajinkya Rahane, Sanju Samson, Stuart Binny
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers
Sunrisers Hyderabad: Shikhar Dhawan, Dale Steyn.
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia
First Posted 12 February, 2014 9:48PM AEST