Ben Stokes has been the most expensive overseas buy in two consecutive editions of the IPL Auction. (Image credit: Twitter)
The nature of the Indian Premier League is such that teams have to bid for foreign players very carefully. Only four overseas players are permitted in the playing XI and thus, acquiring them becomes a major task. Uncapped Indian players are a major bargain buy due to their lack of experience but majority of international stars become core members of the side due to their experience factor. In past editions of the Indian Premier League auction, there have been instances of overseas players breaking the bank and teams have gone all-out to pursue their services. Here are instances of overseas players raking in huge amounts of money in the IPL auctions.
1.) Ben Stokes – setting the stage on fire not once but twice (Rs 14.5 and Rs 12 crore)
The England all-rounder has benefited from the IPL Auction twice in the last couple of seasons. In 2017, he was on the receiving end of a massive bidding war between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians. Sunrisers Hyderabad and Delhi Daredevils managed to jump into the fray but in the end, Rising Pune Supergiants acquired him for a whopping Rs 14.5 crore, making him the most expensive foreign buy ever. History repeated itself in the 2018 auction as well. With the Pune franchise disbanded, Stokes was picked up by Rajasthan Royals for a massive Rs 12 crore to become the most expensive player in that edition of the auction.
2.) Tymal Mills – From unknown to multi-millionaire (Rs 12 crore)
Tymal Mills is the classic case of an unknown player becoming a multi-millionaire overnight. In the 2017 auction, Mills, known for his variations and pace at the County level for Sussex, grabbed plenty of eyeballs when he was sold to Royal Challengers Bangalore for Rs 12 crore. This price fetched him lucrative contracts with the Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League but a year later, he has drifted away from the national selection scene for England.
3.) Chris Lynn – ‘Lynnsane’ amount (Rs 9.6 crore)
The big-hitting Australian had set the stage on fire with his audacious batting in the Big Bash League. His explosive starts at the top of the order along with Sunil Narine had boosted Kolkata Knight Riders. In the 2018 IPL Auction, he was once again up for grabs but KKR managed to retain him with a whopping Rs 9.6 crore base price.
4.) Shane Watson – The veteran continues to get big bucks (Rs 9.5 crore)
The Australian all-rounder had played a vital part in Rajasthan Royals’ success in the first edition of the IPL. He continued to be the one-man army for the team, becoming their leading wicket-taker and run-getter. However, with the franchise suspended for two seasons, Watson was up for grabs in the 2016 IPL Auction and he was picked up for Rs 9.5 crore by Royal Challengers Bangalore.
5.) Andrew Flintoff – England’s first major IPL millionaire (USD 1.55 million)
The England all-rounder had made his mark for his legendary performances in the 2005 Ashes which helped his side beat Australia for the first time in 16 years. In 2009, he played a stellar role in ensuring England won back the Ashes after being whitewashed 5-0 in 2006. Having helped England to victory, Flintoff was one of the hot buys in the 2009 IPL Auction and he was sold for USD 1.55 million to Chennai Super Kings, making him the most expensive overseas player in that edition.