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IPL 2023 Mini-Auction: India’s domestic circuit pacers reap rewards for consistency

IPL 2023 Mini-Auction: India’s four domestic circuit pacers Rajan Kumar, Yash Thakur, Mukesh Kumar and Vidwath Kaverappa who picked up for the first time in IPL Auction.

Rajan Kumar was sold to RCB for INR 70 lakhs in IPL 2023 Mini-Auction |Walking Wicket (Images ©RCBTweets)
Rajan was sold to RCB for INR 70 lakhs in IPL 2023 Auction (Images ©RCBTweets)

The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 mini-auction gave us plenty of surprising moments and at times predictable ones in terms of teams’ churning out money for specific players. This happens at every auction where the teams, in order to fill the voids, spend a significant amount from their purse for just a particular player.

At the same time, there is also a feel-good factor associated with the IPL and the IPL auctions. IPL is a place where talent meets opportunity, and the auctions offer the chance for the uncapped yet talented players to be spotted by a franchise to showcase their talent and take their career to the next level.

IPL has unearthed many talents in the past and the tournament has made sure that India’s pace battery has only grown strong in the last few years. The raw domestic talents like Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Hardik Pandya are among the few pacers in the current Indian set-up who got a chance to show their immense potential in the IPL and this gave India some of the biggest match-winners.

The respective teams’ talent scouts are the ones to be appreciated here and this talent pooling by them has proved to be highly beneficial for the national team. Like the yesteryears, this IPL auction too has given some new names, notably pacers for us to explore in the upcoming edition.

These players have done exceptionally well in the domestic circuit in the white-ball formats for their state teams and were well-rewarded at the time of recent mini-auctions (arguably the most competitive auctions in cricket). Let us list some of the pacers who have earned their way to an IPL contract this year.

Rajan Kumar (Uttarakhand)

Rajan Kumar is a perfect example of an unknown commodity catching the eye of several franchises in the auction. The left-arm pacer was one of the picks for the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) who bought him at INR 70 lakhs against his base price of 20 lakhs.

Rajan, hailing from Haridwar, made his debut for Uttarakhand in SMAT 2022 and quickly earned a name for himself. He is someone who hits the deck the hard with a good yorker too in his repertoire. This makes him one of a kind in India, as a left-arm seamer is quite rare in the country.

His numbers since his debut for Uttarakhand has been super impressive. In the 7 T20 games, Rajan has picked 10 wickets at a stunning ER of 5.88, and performed decently in the List A games as well for his state.

Yash Thakur was sold to Lucknow Super Giants for INR 45 lakhs in IPL 2023 Auction _Walking Wicket (Images ©Twitter)
Yash was sold to LSG for INR 45 lakhs in IPL 2023 Auction (Images ©Twitter)

Yash Thakur (Vidarbha)

The 24-year-old Kolkata-born, Yash Thakur is one of the most exciting medium pacers in the country. Representing Vidarbha in domestic cricket, the pacer has done incredibly well in a short span of time since his List A debut in 2017.

Thakur picked truckload of wickets in SMAT 2022 (15 in 10 matches) and more than his wickets, the way he delivered at the death has been super impressive. The youngster’s economy rate in the tournament was 7.17 which is highly commendable for a pacer who bowls at all the phases of an innings.

Thakur won Vidarbha two games with his death bowling skills in SMAT, and the Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) were smart enough to acquire the services of one of the best death overs exponents in India for INR 45 lakhs. Overall, the pacer has taken 55 wickets from 37 T20 games at an ER of 6.68 and his bowling average is an astounding 14.40.

Unsurprisingly, he has been in the IPL scheme of things as Yash has had several stints as a net bowler with several teams.

India A vs New Zealand A_ Mukesh Kumar plays for Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) in domestic cricket _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©Twitter)
Mukesh Kumar was sold to Delhi Capitals for INR 5.5 cr (Photo: ©Twitter)

Mukesh Kumar (Bengal)

The recent few weeks have been quite eventful for Mukesh Kumar. The 29-year-old Gopalganj-born pacer has been on the fringes of India’s squad in the recent months, and has a staggering record in domestic cricket as well as in the A team series.

Mukesh was picked by the Delhi Capitals (DC) for a whopping INR 5.5 crores making him the second-highest priced uncapped player at the auction. The right-arm pacer’s week got even merrier when he got a maiden call-up to India’s T20I side and most likely can make his debut for the national side in the forthcoming series against Sri Lanka.

It seems his years of hard work and toil in the domestic arena and hardships he had to endure in his personal life like fitness concerns and financial condition during the early phase of his career is finally paying off for the talented pacer who hails from Bihar.

Mukesh Kumar has 25 scalps from 23 T20 games at a strike rate of 19.7 and an economy rate of 7.20.

Vidwath Kaverappa was sold to Punjab Kings for INR 20 lakhs in IPL 2023 Auction_ Walking Wicket (Images ©Punjab Kings)
Vidwath was sold to PBKS for INR 20 lakhs in IPL 2023 Auction (Images ©Punjab Kings)

Vidwath Kaverappa (Karnataka)

Yet another medium pacer who has made heads turn in recent times is Vidwath Kaverappa from Karnataka. The 23-year-old had a sensational start to his career and proved to be a genuine wicket-taker in his short career for his home state thus far. He has quickly risen to be the spearhead and important cog in the Karnataka bowling attack.

Kaverappa has a sub-15 average with the ball in white-ball formats (13.17 in List A and 10.72 in T20s from 8 games each) and has been equally impressive in his four first-class games so far. Known to be a brilliant swing bowler in the mould of Bhuvi, the right-arm medium pace bowler was picked up by Punjab Kings (PBKS) for his base price of INR 20 lakhs.


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