The Indian Premier League is the richest T20 cricket league in the world, and among the richest sports leagues in the world. Run by the BCCI – the richest cricket board in the world, the cash-rich tournament pays hefty sums of money to its players each season. Let’s find out who was the costliest player in each of the last 15 IPL auctions.
MS Dhoni – 2008
MS Dhoni, under whose leadership India won the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup in 2007, was quite expectedly the costlier player in IPL’s first season in 2008. The wicketkeeper batsman, who was at his prime at that time, was signed by Chennai Super Kings for Rs 9.5 crore.
Kevin Pietersen and Andrew Flintoff – 2009
Kevin Pietersen and Andrew Flintoff, former captains of the England team, bagged a deal of Rs 9.8 crore each in IPL 2009. While Pietersen was sold to Royal Challengers Bangalore, Flintoff went to the Chennai Super Kings.
Shane Bond and Kieron Pollard – 2010
Former Kiwi pacer Shane Bond and West Indies all-rounder Kieron Pollard bagged a contract of Rs 4.8 crore each in the 2010 auction. Bond joined Kolkata Knight Riders, while Pollard was acquired by the Mumbai Indians, a team for which he still plays.
Gautam Gambhir – 2011
In 2011, Kolkata Knight Riders spent Rs 14.9 crore to sign Gautam Gambhir, an investment which brought them great profit. Gambhir went on to become one of the leading run-scorers for KKR while also leading them to two IPL trophies – in 2012 and 2014.
Ravindra Jadeja – 2012
Ravindra Jadeja became the costliest player in the 2012 auction after being signed by Chennai Super Kings for Rs 12.8 crore. The all-rounder’s partnership with CSK is unbeaten till date and he continues to play a pivotal role for them.
Glenn Maxwell – 2013
Hard-hitting Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell was acquired by the Mumbai Indians for Rs 6.3 crore in IPL 2013 auction. But Maxwell played only one season for them, and was signed by the Punjab Kings next year.
Yuvraj Singh – 2014
Former India all-rounder Yuvraj Singh became the biggest talking point of the 2014 auction after being signed for Rs 15 crore by the Delhi Capitals. However, he didn’t deliver as per expectations and was released the next year. Yuvraj played the following season for the Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Shane Watson – 2016
Former Australian all-rounder Shane Watson was signed by Royal Challengers Bangalore for Rs 9.5 crore in 2016. Watson’s contributions helped RCB reach the final, which they lost to eventual champions Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Ben Stokes – 2017 and 2018
For two years in a row, England all-rounder Ben Stokes was the costliest player in the IPL auctions. In 2017, the now-defunct Rising Pune Supergiant broke the bank to rope in Stokes for Rs 14.5 crore. The next year, he was bought by the Rajasthan Royals for Rs 12.5 crore.
Jaydev Unadkat and Varun Chakravarthy – 2019
Jaydev Unadkat and Varun Chakravarthy became the costliest players in the 2019 auction after being signed for Rs 8.4 crore by their respective franchises. Unadkat went to Rajasthan Royals, while Chakravarthy, considered a mystery spinner then, was acquired by Punjab Kings.
Pat Cummins – 2020
Australian fast bowler Pat Cummins made headlines in 2020 after being sold for a whopping Rs 15.5 crore in the IPL auction. Cummins was acquired by the Knight Riders, and delivered a few impressive performances for the team that season.
Chris Morris – 2021
Chris Morris became the costliest player not just in the 2021 player auction but in the history of the auctions after being sold for Rs 16.25 crore to Rajasthan Royals. But the South African all-rounder’s performances didn’t match his big price tag, and he was eventually released by the Royals ahead of the 2022 season.
Ishan Kishan – 2022
The 2022 IPL auction belonged to Ishan Kishan, who bagged a contract worth Rs 15.25 crore from his former franchise Mumbai Indians. The wicketkeeper batsman is currently one of the most exciting T20 cricketers around who can send even the good deliveries over the boundary rope.