Team-wise best and worst buys of all-time in IPL auction history

Team-wise best and worst buys of all-time in IPL auction history

Some colossal names in the list.

Ricky Ponting
Ricky Ponting .(Photo by Qamar Sibtain/The India Today Group via Getty Images)

The IPL auctions are one of the fun aspects of the cash-rich league. Several players go under the hammer every year and end up going for huge prices. The concept was very revolutionary when it was introduced ahead of the first season of IPL in 2008. The system stayed even though a lot of changes have been made over the years. 

Previously, only Indian capped players and overseas players would go under the hammer but later, uncapped Indian players also started getting opportunities at the auctions. The system is so intriguing that it adds another dynamic to the league. But, even for the teams, it took some time to get used to this system. It has taken the time to understand how to strategically use the auction to make a good team. 

Ahead of the mini-auction for the 2021 IPL, CricTracker decided to look back and discuss the best and worst buys for each of the franchises during the history of the tournament. There could be more than one ‘best buys’, but we are including only the ones whom we feel have had the most impact on the side.

Here are the team-wise best and worst buys of all-time in IPL Auction history:

1. Kolkata Knight Riders:

Best: Gautam Gambhir

Gautam Gambhir of Kolkata Knight Riders
Gautam Gambhir of Kolkata Knight Riders. (Photo: Dhananjay TK/IANS)

Kolkata Knight Riders never spent their money without proper planning. They are a very strategic planner when it comes to the auction. However, for the first three seasons, the franchise didn’t have any really good performances. They finished sixth twice and last once. It was the auction of 2011 when they made their best buy, a decision which made them a great unit in the years to come.

It was Gautam Gambhir, who was sold at the time for INR 11.04 crore, the highest bid for any player ever. Gambhir had three good seasons with the bat with Delhi and also led them in one season. His abilities as a captain were on the show even during the one home series where he captained India.

Kolkata needed someone to shape the team and Gambhir became the architect and torchbearer of the side. Under his leadership, the franchise won two IPL trophies. He was finally released after a mutual discussion between him and the franchise ahead of the 2018 IPL. 

Worst: Mashrafe Mortaza

Mashrafe Mortaza
Mashrafe Mortaza. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

Kolkata’s worst buy was without a doubt Mashrafe Mortaza, also known as the Narail Express. In the 2009 IPL auction, the legendary Bangladesh fast-bowler was bought for $600,000 (INR 2.6 crore) after his name had become quite famous in the aftermath of India’s loss to Bangladesh in the 2007 World Cup.

He played only one match and gave away 58 runs in four overs. He was tasked with defending more than 20 runs in the final over against the defunct Deccan Chargers, and he failed to do that. He never played for them after this, nor did he get a chance to play for any other IPL team.