Posted on: July 22, 2013
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Lee Chong Wei and Saina Nehwal proved costly for the inaugural IBL players auction

By Antara Das

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Lee Chong Wei and Saina Nehwal proved costly for the inaugural IBL players auction

At last, Saina Nehwal managed to accommodate herself in her home team in the inaugural Indian Badminton League's players auction at New Delhi today. Hyderabad Hotshots bought the Indian badminton star for US $120,000 while the world number one Lee Chong Wei proved to be the costliest player who entered Mumbai Masters for a whopping amount of US $135,000.

Among the six icon players, Saina was the one whose base price was fixed at US $50,000 (Rs 29,70,482). Previously, she had stated that she would prefer to play for either Hyderabad or Lucknow. Ultimately, her wish was fulfilled when Hyderabad picked her up following making a bid of US $120,000 (Rs 71,27,796 approximately).

Remarkably, the Malaysian icon Lee Chong Wei got the franchises really excited. He triggered a bidding war between Delhi Smashers and Mumbai Masters. Subsequently, Mumbai, which includes cricket legend Sunil Gavaskar among its consortium of owners, emerged to bag the biggest international name in the tussle at the auction for Rs 8,019,032 approximately.

Commonwealth Games bronze-medalist and an icon player Parupalli Kashyap was selected by Banga Beats for US $75,000 (Rs 4,455,622 approximately).

In fact, rising star PV Sindhu was the huge buy netted by Lucknow Warriors who bought her for US $80,000 (Rs 4,752,664 approximately). 

On the other side, aggressive doubles star Jwala Gutta entered Delhi Smashers at US $31,000 (Rs 1,841,699). Jwala's base price was reckoned at US $25,000 (Rs 1,485,241).

Little-known Tinh Minh Nyugen of Vietnam also elicited another interesting bidding war between Delhi Smashers and Pune Piston. Finally, Pune purchased him for US $44,000 (Rs 2,614,024), which was much above his base price of US $25,000.

The franchises owners--BOP Group (Bangalore), PVP Group (Hyderabad), Sahara (Lucknow), Krrish Group (Delhi), Burman family (Pune) and consortium of cricket legend Sunil Gavaskar, Telugu movie star Akkineni Nagarjuna and former cricketer V Chamundeshwarnath (Mumbai) have a budget of approximately US $275,000 to fill the vacancy of 66 players.

The 6 franchises will purchase a total of 11 players each. Six of these will be Indian, four foreign players and one Indian junior player.

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