How IPL Auction Works: The Process Of Buying and Selling IPL Players
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How IPL Auction Works: The Process Of Buying and Selling IPL Players

One of the fascinating parts of the IPL is how players are selected to play for a team. As all the teams might show interest in one player, IPL came up with an auction-based player buying system where the team who is willing to pay the highest for a player gets the player. It is just like any regular auction where an item (in this case a player) is selected and bidders (team owners) bid for the player. The team with the highest bid gets the player. The player then has to sign a contract with the team for the same.

IPL auction is held every year by BCCI where new players and players whose contract with one franchise has ended can sign up. The auction occurs in a day or two where teams battle to get the best players at a reasonable price. Although the action happens when the auction is live, the working behind the auction and team management's hard work takes months. They analyze different aspects of a player. Why might they want them in their team? What advantage they bring on the table, What other teams might be interested in the same player etc. Even after all this homework, some teams might not get what they wanted after an auction. IPL auction is unpredictable. Predicting what might happen in an IPL auction is just like making IPL match predictions, It never does what one thinks. Here's how the IPL Auction works:

To keep the auction fair, BCCI allocates a predefined budget to each team. In general, it is around 80 crore INR. Each team has to spend at least 75% of this allotted budget in the auction to keep things fair.

Players form a major part of the auction. Players are categorized into three main categories:
  1. Overseas: Players from countries other than India. Generally, they are very expensive.
  2. Capped: Indian players who've played for team India in international cricket. They are again on the more expensive side.
  3. Uncapped: Indian players who haven't played any international cricket. These are the younger talents. They are generally bought at a lower price.
There is no limit to the number of players who can apply for an IPL auction. Generally, the number of players that apply for an IPL auction is somewhere in the thousands. Not all the players get into the auction though. Teams first shortlist the players that they want to put in the auction.

how teams are selecting players in IPL auction
Players also get to choose their base price (The minimum a team can buy them for). The base price can be between 10 lakhs to 2 crores. When a player's name comes up on the auction table, the bidding starts at his base price. If no one shows interest in a player at his base price, he'll remain unsold. Unsold players get a second round of auction where teams can select some players from the unsold list to be brought back into the auction. Here's a fun fact, In 2011 auction Chris Gayle, one of the most famous T20 cricketers of the world was unsold in the auction and was later brought in as a replacement, and in the same season he scored the most runs and ended up being the Orange cap holder.

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