IPL 11 Auction Scheduled for 27-28 Jan 2018
We're a little less than four months away from the start of what will be one of the biggest seasons of the Indian Premier League thus far. The IPL 2018 auction has been a talking point since several months now, as each and every player was supposed to go under the hammer with completely revamped squads. However, this was reconsidered, with teams initially being allowed to retain up to 3 players, and now the latest news is that teams are allowed to retain a maximum of 5 players.
The auction will still be a massive one, as two franchises (Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings) will be returning after serving their 2-year disciplinary ban. The IPL 10 auction took place on 20th February 2017 at the Ritz-Carlton in Bengaluru, while the auction for the upcoming IPL will be a 2-day event, to take place between 27th and 28th January 2018, also in Bengaluru. Apart from retaining 5 players, franchises will also be allowed to use their RTM (Right To Match) cards at the auction, but we're still expecting far more than last auction’s 351 players to go under the hammer.
The dates for the IPL 11 auction will coincide with India's tour of South Africa (3rd Test) and also the final of the domestic tournament 'Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2018'. During the build up to the announcement of the auction dates, we saw other big IPL changes, like a transfer window during the season, as well as match timings changing from 4pm to 3pm IST and 8pm to 7pm IST.
According to reports, the 8 teams (Rising Pune Supergiant & Gujarat Lions scrapped) will have to submit their player retention lists by 4th of January 2018, following which the BCCI will release a complete list of players to be auctioned. We're expecting Virat Kohli to be retained by RCB (Royal Challengers Bangalore), while CSK (Chennai Super Kings) are expected to pick up MS Dhoni from the auction, irrespective of the price to be paid.
The auction is set to be a much bigger affair than what we've gotten used to over the years, and franchises will be allowed a maximum purse of INR 80 crore (up from INR 66 crore of 2017) to build their squad of 25 players. The added purse comes as a result of the extra revenue for the IPL from title rights sale. VIVO secured IPL title rights until 2022, bidding an outrageous INR 2199 crore which was 50% more than their nearest rival OPPO’s bid.
We're all excited about the IPL 2018 auction. Most teams will be looking for a complete revamp and not many will use up their quota of 5 retentions. It'll be interesting to see how much the likes of MS Dhoni, Rohit Sharma, Ben Stokes (last year's highest paid), Hardik Pandya, AB de Villiers and others will fetch at the auction, where teams will have to spend at least 75% of their salary cap (INR 60 crore). We’re certainly going to witness intense bidding in Bengaluru over these 2 days!
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