With loud fanfare in the cricket world the IPL auction took place this week. whether you like it or not it’s a big thing and it won’t be going away any time soon. Initially players were retained by their teams, those who were released or new to the tournament went into said auction. There were several notable bds and non-bids, with England’s Jason Roy and Alex Hales missing out Hales comes as a big surprise to me, he scored 1,080 runs at an average of 32.7 in 202o and in 2021 391 runs at an average of 43.4. Roy has a much patchier 2020, but he can be a match winner on his day. In addition the following Engl players went unsold – Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, David Willey, Lewis Gregory, Ravi Bopara, Reece Topley, Ben Duckett, Mark Wood withdrew from the Auction. The most notable name outside of England is probably Aaron Finch

A look at the big winners in the Auction

  • Chris Morris RS16.25 Crore – £1,599.636 (the highest bid in an IPL auction)
  • Kyle Jamieson RS 15 Crore – £1,475,698
  • Glenn Maxwell RS 14.25 Crore – £1,401634
  • Jhye Richardson RS 14 Crore – £1,377,044
  • Krishnappa Gowtham RS 9.25 Crore – £909, 963

Life changing sums of money – next a look at the top earners retained by their team, it’s no surprise to see Virat Kohli topping this list, again, love or loathe him, he is box office. Although his Team Royal Challengers Bangalore have never won the competition, in spite of featuring in 3 finals. The Mumbai Indians have 5 wins, there’s a very good documentary series on Netflix that follows them in 2018, a year that saw them finish 5th.

  • Virat Kohli RS 17 Crore – £1,672,976
  • Pat Cummins RS 15.5 Crore – £1,525,257
  • Rohit Sharma RS 15 Crore – £1,475,698
  • MS Dhoni RS 15 Crores – £1,475, 698
  • Ben Stokes RS 12.5 Crore – £1,230,008
  • David Warner RS 12 Crore – £1,180,828
  • AB de Villiers RS 11 Crore – £1,082,426
  • Suresh Raina RS 11 Crore – £1,082,426
  • Hardik Pandya RS 11 Crore – £1,082,426
  • Manish Pandey RS 11 Crore – £1,082,426

Next up _ England players who were bought in the auction, or retained. Included in the list above is Ben Stokes the highest paid from the England ranks, who else is involved? It should be noted players receive additional payments, such as appearance fees and travel allowances.

  • Moeen Ali – RS 7.0 Crore – £688,820
  • Tom Curran – RS 5.25 Crore – £516, 532
  • Sam Billings – RS 2.0 Crore – £196,713
  • Dawid Malan – RS 1.5 Crore – £147, 539
  • Liam Livingstone – RS 0.75 Crore – £73,770

Retained

  • Jofra Archer – RS 7.2 Crore – £708,188
  • Sam Curran – RS 5.5 Crore – £541,121
  • Eoin Morgan – RS 5.25 Crore – £516, 532
  • Jos Buttler – RS 4.4 Crore – £432, 913
  • Chris Jordan – RS 3 Crore – £295,167
  • Jonny Bairstow – RS 2.2 Crore – £216, 456
  • Chris Woakes – RS 1.5 Crore – £147,584

The IPL runs from 11th April to 6th June 2021, 8 weeks. The County Cricket season is due to start on !8th April 2021, England have a 2 Test series against New Zealand, with the first test starting on 2nd June and the second on 10th June. In hope I’ve bought tickets for the second test at Edgbaston. The players highlighted in bold have test central contracts worth in the region of £700,000 they then received match fees at around £18,000. By anyone’s standards, other than perhaps Premier League footballers that’s a considerable sum of money.

The England management are juggling a lot of cricket in 2021, with 9 test matches against India, the 2 played against Sri Lanka and the 2 arranged against New Zealand, all that with an Ashes series due to start in November. On top of that they have Pakistan and Sri Lanka visiting for white ball tours in 2021. There’s been a lot of criticism of the rotation policy being used with players such as Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow and Moeen Ali returning home, so not available for tests. There’s also been the suggestion that as employers, the ECB should be able to tell their players when they can and can’t play. With a T20 World Cup due to take place in October and November of this year, most players , if fit and picked will play 14 games in IPL 2021, that can only be good experience for them. If players are in teams featuring in the final rounds they’ll miss the first New Zealand test at least. That of course goes for the Blackcaps players too, so the likes of Kane Williamson may well miss the matches.

In a job role that sees a limited time to make hay, it would be hard to imagine players being told they couldn’t play in the IPL or to be dictated to as far as the duration is concerned. Even for the lowest paid of those above, Liam Livingstone, he’s still earning nearly £74k for 6 weeks work. Like the IPL, it’s an issue that’s not going to go away.

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