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IPL 2014 Player Auctions: Why did Yuvraj Singh fetch Rs 14 Crore?

ANALYST
Feature
46.38K   //    16 Feb 2014, 12:53 IST

All the Yuvraj fans may shout out ‘I told you so’, but one has to admit this was out of the blue. That he was, definitely, going to be one of the most sought after names in the auction was pretty sure, but that he would create history by becoming the highest grossing IPL player of all time was not thought of by anyone. There are some factors that can explain why this happened. This is certainly easier to explain than figuring out why Dinesh Karthik ended up with almost a similar amount or why there were no takers for Jayawardene.

RCB in need of a middle order batsman

Yuvraj Singh played for the Pune Warriors in the last 3 seasons

RCB were desperate to get Yuvraj for a reason, and it was clear. They needed someone of the highest calibre in their middle order, who has a lot of T20 experience as well. They did have people like Saurabh Tiwary and Mayank Agarwal, but they were obviously not that effective.

There were many instances of their batting losing its way if, for some reason, the openers didn’t fire. This proved to be more of a problem when they were chasing a big total. Yuvraj fits the requirement perfectly. He can deliver the goods and has been one of the most able batsman at that position. True, he hasn’t been in the greatest form of his life of late and has been out of the national ODI squad, but someone like him should not take time to get into the groove.

What is more? His bowling can sometimes prove to be an asset for the team, as has been seen time and again. He can lift the team with some great all-round display, and he often compensates with the ball if his bat doesn’t fire. Having such a complete package of skills in a single player is great (the 2011 World Cup can be recollected here), and now it is up to him to justify his selection and the heavy price tag.

Bidding wars

The Royal Challengers were not the only franchise looking to grab the all-rounder. Even KKR were looking to get him badly, but they were denied by the Vijay Mallya owned franchise, who were determined to go as far as needed. No wonder his price escalated, and starting from his base price of Rs 2 crores, he was finally bought for Rs 14 crores. This shows what can happen if there are two parties pretty determined to take a player. Probably they guessed he would be very hungry to perform and prove a point in this IPL. Something similar probably happened in the case of Kevin Pietersen, who also fetched a booty of 9 crore.

He certainly is a franchise magnet. When the Pune Warriors came into existence, he was given the charge of the side, and immense faith was put in him by the Subrata Roy led franchise. Now that the team has become defunct, the interest in him soared up.

T20 record

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He has been a great T20 player, and there are no second opinions about that. He has 2750 runs from 116 innings at an average of 27.22 and a strike rate of 135.46, with 15 scores of over 50. As far as playing for India is concerned, those numbers are even better with the average jumping to 33.38 and the strike rate to 153.08, which is a testimony to his awesomeness. To add to all these, he has 63 wickets at an average of 20.28 and an economy just below 7, which is certainly not bad for a bowler in this format.

His memorable performances include the 6 sixes off the bowling of Stuart Broad and 70 off 30 balls against Australia, both of which won games for India in the inaugural T20 World Cup 2007, among many others.

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