In a stunning turn of events, Australian fast bowlers Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins became the most expensive players in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction on Tuesday. Starc, who was bought by Kolkata Knight Riders for a staggering Rs 24.75 crore, surpassed his captain Cummins, who had earlier set a new record of Rs 20.50 crore with Sunrisers Hyderabad.
The two pacemen, who had recently led Australia to a World Cup victory in India, were in high demand among the franchises, who were willing to shell out huge sums for their services. Starc and Cummins, who are among the best fast bowlers in the world, had also impressed with their performances against India in a Test series last month.
The bidding war for the two Australians reached unprecedented levels, as the IPL auction crossed the Rs 20 crore mark for the first time. To put things into perspective, the minimum salary cap for the inaugural auction in 2008 was only Rs 24.95 crore.
The winning team in the IPL gets Rs 20 crore as prize money. Starc and Cummins will earn more than a crore for each match they play in the IPL, which is more than what they get from their annual contracts with Cricket Australia. Even the richest franchise, Mumbai Indians, owned by the Ambani family, could not afford to bid for them after joining the initial race.
The IPL auction, which is known for making global headlines and creating history every year, has once again lived up to its reputation, as Starc and Cummins shattered all previous records and became the most valuable players in the world’s most lucrative cricket league.
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