The IPL auction is a day when young and upcoming players get to live their dreams of playing with and against many world-class players.
Many dreams were made this year with youngsters such as Mohammed Azharuddeen being bought by the Royal Challengers of Bangalore for Rs 20 lakh and Shahrukh Khan and Riley Meredith being bought for Rs 5.25 crore and Rs 8 crore, respectively, by the newly christened by Punjab Kings. This auction also had some surprises like Chennai Super Kings buying Cheteshwar Pujara, Steve Smith going for his base price to the Delhi Capitals and Australian T20I captain Aaron Finch going unsold.
While teams such as Punjab Kings, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Royal Challengers going hard at the auction, teams like Sunrisers Hyderabad and Mumbai Indians already looking settled and did not have to spend big at the auction.
While some veteran players and Indian capped players went unsold, here is the list of the top 5 players who surprised many by taking home huge contracts at the IPL auction 2021.
1. Chris Morris – Rs 16.25 crore (Rajasthan Royals)
Chris Morris has become the most expensive buy in the history of the Indian Premier League. Rajasthan Royals bought Morris for Rs 16.25 crore after a bidding war with Punjab Kings and defending champions Mumbai Indians. It is quite surprising that Morris went for a lot of money considering that he has played only nine games in the previous IPL season and hasn’t played any competitive or international cricket since. By getting Morris, RR have now sorted their four overseas option – Jofra Archer, Ben Stokes, Jos Butler and Morris. With Stokes not bowling much, Morris will be bowling with Archer and provide much needed lower-order firepower. However, Morris will have the extra pressure of performing considering his price tag.
2. Kyle Jamieson – Rs 15 crore (Royal Challengers of Bangalore)
One of the most talked players at this year's auction is New Zealand’s Kyle Jamieson. The Royal Challengers of Bangalore spent a whopping Rs 15 crore on the 6-feet-8-inches tall Kiwi after a bidding war with Punjab Kings. Jamieson is the fourth most expensive purchase in IPL history. Though Jamieson is a fast bowler, the Kiwi wants to prove that he can transform as a proper all-rounder. With Jamieson in the lineup, RCB has once again loaded their squad with some big names. However, with the price tag, Jamieson will be under a lot of pressure to perform.
3. Glenn Maxwell – Rs 14.25 crore (Royal Challengers of Bangalore)
Before the auction, there were questions as to how much would Glen Maxwell for. However, “The Big Show”, as he is called, was sold to the Royal Challengers of Bangalore for a record of Rs 14.25 crore. Maxwell became is fifth most expensive buy in the IPL history and the second-highest in this auction. RCB got Maxwell after a heated bidding with Chennai Super Kings, who were willing to pay Rs 14 crore for Maxwell despite having a purse of Rs 19.90 crore. RCB said that Maxwell will be playing the finisher's role and would be able to take the pressure off AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli. RCB buying Maxwell for Rs 14.25 crore despite scoring just 108 runs and picked up three wickets in 13 matches without hitting a single six. However, RCB will be hopeful that Maxwell comes good for them.
4. Jhye Richardson – Rs 14 crore (Punjab Kings)
The newly christened Punjab Kings came into the auctions with the biggest purse and have made some interesting additions to their side. The Kings went all out and have bought Australian pacer Jhye Richardson for a whopping Rs 14 crore, making him the second most expensive bowler in the history of the IPL. Richardson is a hot commodity in the cricketing circuit and has been talked about a lot before the auction. Richardson finished as the leading wicket-taker in the recently concluded Australian Big Bash League. Known for his raw pace, Richardson will give support to Mohammed Shami and fellow Australian Riley Meredith, the most expensive overseas uncapped player.
5. K Gowtam – Rs 9.25 crore (Chennai Super Kings)
Chennai Super Kings surprised everyone by going all out and buying Krishnappa Gowtham for a record Rs 9.25 crore after a bidding war with Sunrisers Hyderabad. With CSK’s buy, Gowtham is now the most expensive uncapped player in the history of the IPL and the most expensive Indian player in this year's auction. Gowtham’s addition gives MS Dhoni more options with the ball. In 2018, when Rajasthan Royals purchased him for a huge price, Gowtam showed he could finish games and helped RR qualify for the playoffs that year. With Jadeja and Dhoni being the two designated finishers for the side, Gowtham’s addition helps CSK have a longer batting order as a proper finisher and a handy off-spinner.