The two new Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises — Lucknow and Ahmedabad — announced their three draft picks each on Friday ahead of the IPL mega-auction to be held next month. While Ahmedabad roped in Hardik Pandya, Rashid Khan and Shubman Gill, Lucknow drew in KL Rahul, Marcus Stoinis and Ravi Bishnoi. Rahul, who will also lead the Lucknow based franchise in the upcoming IPL season, was brought in by the franchise for Rs 17 crore, making him the joint tallest player in the history of the money-rich league.
In 2018, former Indian captain Virat Kohli was signed by the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) for Rs 17 crore before the auction.
The Lucknow franchise will enter this year’s auction with a purse of Rs 59.89 crore.
Aside from Rahul, Lucknow signed Australian all-rounder Stoinis and uncapped Indian spinner Bishnoi for Rs 9.2 crore and Rs 4 crore respectively.
Ahmedabad, on the other hand, signed Hardik Pandya as their skipper for Rs 15 crore, while the stalwart Rashid Khan from Afghanistan has also been picked up for the same price.
Shubman Gill, on the other hand, was lined up for Rs 8 crore ahead of this year’s auction.
Ahmedabad will enter the mega auction with Rs 52 crore in their wallets.
A total of 1,214 players (896 Indian and 318 abroad) registered to participate in the mega auction, the IPL said in a statement on Saturday.
The list consists of 270 capped, 903 uncapped and 41 Associate players.
A total of 27 players have been retained by the existing franchises, while the two new franchises have three players each lined up ahead of the mega sale in Bengaluru next month.
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