The curious case of Ishant Sharma remaining unsold

IPL Ishant Sharma
(Photo Source: BCCI)

Tall India pace bowler Ishant Sharma was one of the big names that failed to attract any bids during the IPL 2017 auctions. The Delhi pace bowler has been predominantly seen as a bowler of longer formats. He is not among the first choice bowler when it comes to limited overs cricket. His absence from the national side in the ODIs and T20Is is a testimonial of this fact.

The auction certainly came as a disappointment as he went unsold. On the other hand, other bowlers like Varun Aaron fetched deals close to INR 3 crores. Aaron was bagged by Kings XI Punjab for INR 2.8 crores despite setting a lowly base price of INR 30 lakh.


Ishant Sharma, however, had set a high base price of INR 2 crore. He was the only Indian player to set a base price as high as that. It certainly backfired for him. As most people and cricket pundits reckoned, the high price did not work in favor of the lanky pacer. Rookie and uncapped pacers like Mohammad Siraj and T Natarajan also got their deals in crores after having set a low base price. One of the owners of one of the teams at the auctions explained the same case in a fitting quote.

In a quote to PTI, the top boss noted, “Ishant Sharma shouldn’t have kept his base price at INR 2 crores. Firstly, he doesn’t play for India in T20s and (is) not considered a white ball bowler. He is only playing Test cricket. Ideally, he should have shed his ego and kept his base price in the range of INR 30 lakhs. Varun Aaron gained just because of that even though Ishant probably has more quality.”

Also read- IPL 2017 Auction: Top 5 unsold players

In fact, a week ago, when Ishant had set his base price so high, his fellow Delhi and Team Indian team-mate Gautam Gambhir was also surprised to see such a high rate. Ishant, over the years, has played for four IPL teams. He represented Rising Pune Supergiants in the previous edition and had played just 4 games. He leaked 148 runs in those matches for his 3 wickets. Apart from RPS, he has been a part of Deccan Chargers, Sunrisers Hyderabad, and Kolkata Knight Riders.