IPL 2022 Auction saw as many as 13 fast bowlers sold for million dollars, five were Indians
There is a famous saying in the cricket world: "Batters win you games but bowlers win you tournaments."
The IPL 2022 mega-auction that took place last weekend ended after two days of intense bidding action from the 10 participating franchises. The mega-auction was filled with surprises with many big names going unsold while lesser-known faces getting rewarded for consistent performances. However, the show stealers of the auctions have mostly been fast bowlers.
Unlike other IPL auctions, this time the seamers were in high demand and rightly so, afterall they act as the heart of the team, doing wonders with the new ball and handling death overs as well. In the recently concluded IPL 2022 mega-auction, there were 13 fast bowlers, including fast bowling allrounders, who were bought for million dollars and more. Out of those, five were India bowlers.
While some clinched massive deals owing to their batting abilities, few got contracts entirely on the back of their fast bowling abilities. However, it will not be off the mark to say that pacers and pace bowling all-rounders were in huge demand throughout the event in Bengaluru.
Pacers cum all-rounders grabbed big contracts
Deepak Chahar (INR 14 crores, Chennai Super Kings)
Deepak Chahar became the most expensive fast bowler in the history of IPL by bagging INR 14 crores from Chennai Super Kings (CSK). The pacer also finished as the second-most expensive player at the auction after Ishan Kishan.
Chahar's batting ability has vastly improved over the last couple of years. He has delivered many crucial knocks for Team India with the bat in the last one year, be it in Sri Lanka, South Africa or recently in India against West Indies. His all-round abilities make him a valuable asset to a team.
Shardul Thakur (INR 10.75 crores, Delhi Capitals)
The other Indian pacer who did well in the auction was Shardul Thakur who was bought by Delhi Capitals (DC) for INR 10.75 crores. Thakur was under the hammer in a fierce bidding war before moving to his new franchise DC for IPL 2022. Thakur is one of the top bowlers for India currently and a regular face in the ODI, T20I and Test squads.
He is among the crucial bowling all-rounders for India, mostly known for picking key wickets at crucial times. Hailed as "Lord" among fans, Shardul is now a much-improved batter as he helped India on numerous occasions with the bat too.
Jofra Archer (INR 8 crores, Mumbai Indians)
One of the surprise buys of this season for sure, given Jofra Archer may not be available for the 2022 edition of IPL. Mumbai Indians (MI) and Rajasthan Royals (RR) undertook intense bidding on Jofra Archer with the former eventually acquiring the services of the England pacer for INR 8 crores making him another million dollar buy.
Archer has a proven track record in IPL whether it is bowling with the new ball or bowling in the death. Jofra is handy with the bat too. He carries a strike rate of 157.25 in IPL. Mumbai Indians and cricket fans across the globe are excited about the prospect of Jofra Archer and Jasprit Bumrah bowling in tandem in the 2023 edition of the IPL.
Jason Holder (INR 8.75 crores, Lucknow Super Giants)
Holder provides a valuable option as a seam-bowling all-rounder to the team. He can open the bowling and can be used in the middle order as well as at the death.
Talking about his batting, the West Indian can clear the fence with relative ease on his day while he can also hold anchor in case the top order collapses, which makes him a big asset for any team.
Romario Shepherd (INR 7.75 crores, Sunrisers Hyderabad)
West Indies death bowler Romario Shepherd was picked by Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) for INR 7.75 crores. Shepherd hogged the limelight with his excellent all-round display for Guyana Amazon Warriors in the Caribbean Premier League, which got him to the national side as well.
Shepherd, on his day, can torment any batting line-up of the world with his great bowling skills. The tall West Indies pacer has got the natural ability to bowl fast, while his height helps him get extra bounce off the surface. He is an equally good player with the bat too.
Odean Smith (INR 6 crores, Punjab Kings)
The emerging star of West Indies Odean Smith signed a great deal with Punjab Kings (PBKS) as they acquired his services for INR 6 crores. The 25-year-old got in the headlines after breaking Chris Gayle's bat into two pieces in Caribbean Premier League through his deadly bowling.
Smith, who can clock 150 kph has recently given an excellent performance in the 3-match ODI series against India last week. He troubled most of the Indian batters with his raw pace while he was equally good with the bat as well. His ability to clear the ropes with ease while batting lower down the order makes him a rare commodity for the team.
The list doesn't get exhausted here as there were few more names like Harshal Patel (INR 10.75 crores), Pat Cummins (INR 7.25 crores) who got a contract on the back of their all-round performances; some pacers got a heavy bag solely on the back of their fast bowling skills as well.
Avesh Khan (INR 10 crores, Lucknow Super Giants)
Indian pacer Avesh Khan has become the most expensive uncapped player in the history of IPL after bagging a contract of INR 10 crores from LSG in the IPL 2022 mega-auction.
Avesh Khan, who led the pace attack of DC in the 2021 edition of IPL, was superb last season, both with the new ball as well as in the death overs. He was the second-highest wicket-taker of the tournament last year.
Mark Wood (INR 7.5 crores, Lucknow Super Giants)
England pacer Mark Wood was picked by the new franchise LSG for INR 7.5 crores in the IPL 2022 mega-auction. Wood is currently one of the fastest bowlers in the world. With his extra bounce and pace, Wood has tormented most batting line-ups he has bowled against. He is a great addition for LSG, considering his pace and skills.
Lockie Ferguson (INR 10 crores, Gujarat Titans)
The New Zealand right-arm pacer Lockie Ferguson was snapped by Gujarat Titans (GT) during IPL 2022 mega-auction for INR 10 crores. His sharp pace and impeccable lengths often creates troubles for batters. The Kiwi quick can bowl in middle overs as well as in the death overs. His pace along with great control will be an asset to the team.
Prasidh Krishna (INR 10 crores, Rajasthan Royals)
Prasidh Krishna who was the player of the series in the recent ODI series between India and WI, bagged a terrific deal of INR 10 crores with Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the IPL 2022 mega-auction. With his ability to get the ball to swing and seam, the 26-year-old can deceive any batting line-up.
Kagiso Rabada (INR 9.25 crores, Punjab Kings)
The South African right-arm fast bowler Kagiso Rabada was picked for INR 9.25 crores by PBKS in the IPL 2022 mega-auction. The 2020 edition of IPL was Kagiso Rabada’s best season with the ball in his IPL career so far as he picked 30 wickets in just 17 matches at an average of 18.27, including two four-wicket hauls. However, he failed to replicate the performance in the following year.
In the 2022 edition of IPL, the South African seamer would be looking for a fresh start with his smart and intelligent bowling. He will most probably lead the pace attack for PBKS in the upcoming season of the tournament.
Besides these 11 pacers, Harshal Patel (INR 10.75 crores, Royal Challengers Bangalore), Shivam Mavi (INR 7.25 crores, Kolkata Knight Riders), Kartik Tyagi (INR 4 crores, Sunrisers Hyderabad), the 2022 Under-19 World Cup stars, Raj Bawa (INR 2 crores, Punjab Kings) and Rajvardhan Hangargekar (INR 1.5 crores, Chennai Super Kings), along with overseas stars Trent Boult (INR 8 crores, Rajasthan Royals), Pat Cummins (INR 7.25 crores, Kolkata Knight Riders), Josh Hazlewood (INR 7.75 crores, Royal Challengers Bangalore), Tymal Mills (INR 1.5 crores, Mumbai Indians), and Rovman Powell (INR 2.8 crores, Delhi Capitals) were the show stealers in the two-day event in Bengaluru.
While some are brilliant with new ball, others are specialists in the death overs. While few offer variety, some have raw pace. But all of them can give four overs of seam to the team.