From civil war to civil acceptance
Ever imagined how Abraham Lincoln must be tossing in his grave when he hears the word Auction. An ancient abolishment now structured to practice to decide how talent could be up for sale. Now if the Cambridge dictionary were to be considered to define the term auction, it would be defined as “a usually public sale of goods or property, where people make higher and higher bids for each thing, until the thing is sold to the person who will pay most.” However, there was a point of time when the world curbed with colour identified white superior to black. That marked the beginning of racism and slavery which most coloured individuals were then subject to. In such a situation in America, the public sale/auction started a new trend. They replaced the sale of goods and considered these coloured individuals as property leading to their auction. Years later, the civil war broke and it was finally under the leadership of President Abraham Lincoln that slavery was abolished. Well, it does serve an interesting story as most of Hollywood is still making money narrating them time and again. Though slavery and auctioning humans was then abolished the concept was readily accepted by sports.
Rationally speaking, the concept does make true sense. Valuing a player with his fee is the best possible example to compensate for the efforts that he or she would be offering in return for the enormous amounts they receive. However, there lies a catch. In the ancient days, the coloured individuals were auctioned based on their capability to fight, entertain or their stamina to work. That though worked effectively, there still seems to be a lack in justification in placing a bidding amount for a sportsman’s talent. The best part being that the sportsman themselves just like the coloured individuals don’t have much of a say when they are up for purchase. If we were to walk down memory lane. It could be presumed that back in 2014 during the IPL auctions, veteran Yuvraj Singh would be elated to see the franchise’s battle it out to purchase his talent which was eventually sold for a massive 14 crores. However, it would be amazing to have known how Vijay Mallya would have possibly felt at the end of the season when there wasn’t much on offer for the veteran against the reasonably hefty price he paid. Well Yuvraj can definitely call himself lucky as after the Kingfisher scandal, this business tycoon is used to such shocks, for others, there might just have been crisis and chaos.
The system of auctions in totality at least as far as the IPL is concerned is quite a business risk. As unpredictable as the game is, to pay a player based on previously displayed talent well in advance of the tournament is almost like jumping into the ditch. To add to that, with the present rules of the game; not to mention the conditions and the equipments, it stands too much of a risk to invest in bowlers at all. It’s more like buying shares for Mukta Arts especially at a time when Subhash Ghai announces a film all over again just when the industry is hinting at his retirement with Lifetime achievement awards. Alas, the businessmen though are just like the cine going audience, they’d rather watch an already predicted flop film and crib rather than not watching it at all. Keeping that philosophy in mind, the daredevils within the businessmen will head into darkness with their eye blindfolded in order to judge art at its apparent best cost. With the two corrupt teams in Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings exiting this year, the doors have opened to two new teams in the Rising Pune Supergiants and the Gujarat Lions with a definite full marks to the extent of creativity they put behind naming their teams. Running through the remaining purse, consistent losers, Delhi Daredevils, have a purse amount of an approx 38 crores which they would be spending in order to purchase fresh talent. Lets pray the capital city gets their combination right this time as even the worst player doesn’t fall to a bluff at poker as much as Delhi loses in the IPL. The other teams too have quite a significant budget which they would be spending to recruit their team to victory. The amounts being, 23 crores for Kings eleven Punjab, 17.95 crores for the Kolkata Knight Riders, 14.05 crores for the Mumbai Indians, 21.625 crores for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, 27 crores for the new Rising Pune Supergiants and Gujarat Lions respectively. With a minimum salary rule of $22,000 for players below the age of 22 and $50000 for the ones who are 22 and above, Cricket definitely seems to be the order of the day that most kids growing up today will either be looking forward to, or parents being parents would be forcing their children into.
As many players prepare for the nervous day expecting and accepting whatever price comes their way, there stand many who’s confidences push them to state the minimum value of them as a sportsman. Some of these legendary individuals include, Ishant Sharma who’s economy rate though more than 8 demands a sum of a minimum of 2 crores for representing a franchise. The others in the 2 crore category include Shane Watson, Kevin Pieterson and Yuvraj Singh.
However, as Watson’s form in the IPL does justify his demands, Pieterson and Yuvraj have a lot to ponder about. Yuvraj Singh, the hero of the country today with his swaggering last over antics during the last match of the Australia-India T20 series was very well close to being the biggest villain on the occasion if luck didn’t appear on time. However, as the saying goes luck favours the brave and Yuvraj most definitely is nothing short of a lionheart.
On one hand though as the IPL has become a platform for minting money glamour and success, it has also been a platform to poach talent. It has also been a platform where many like the Pathan brothers can sway away from reality at least for the two months of the tournament. With the conclusion of this year’s auction, the world will be heading towards a power packed entertaining summer ahead with days counted leading into the world T20 championship to be held in India followed by the Indian Premier League.