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2008 IPL Auction | Recap of First-ever IPL Auction

The 2024 IPL Auction is already upon us. The auction for the 17th edition of the IPL will be held in Dubai on December 19. Back in 2008, it saw humble beginnings, and in this article, we will see who went unsold and who went for all the money in the inaugural auction.

The 2008 IPL Auction

The IPL was conceived right after India’s win in the 2007 T20 World Cup, where they beat Pakistan in the thrilling finale. Soon after, the authorities at the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) closed in on the methodology of picking a particular player: it was the auction.

As the Indian team played in Australia, back home in India, on February 20, 2008, the respective franchise owners gathered and built their teams. Meanwhile, a second auction took place in March, where some players with a lower base price went under the hammer.

Here’s how they went about it.

Icon Players in 2008 IPL Auction:

There were eight franchises, and five had icon players who received more money than the most expensive player in the franchise. The team would be structured around these MVPs (Most Valued Players).

The following are the icon players:

  • Mumbai Indians – Sachin Tendulkar

  • Delhi Daredevils – Virender Sehwag

  • Kolkata Knight Riders – Sourav Ganguly

  • Kings XI Punjab: Yuvraj Singh

  • Royal Challengers Bangalore – Rahul Dravid

Deccan Chargers, Rajasthan Royals, and Chennai Super Kings didn’t have an icon player. VVS Laxman was offered the icon player role by Deccan Chargers but voluntarily relinquished his position as an icon player so that his franchise could use that extra money somewhere else.


Top 5 Costliest Players in 2008 IPL Auction

The auction took place in two rounds. Players had already quoted a price and were divided into two rounds depending on their base price. The Auction-1, which took place in February, had bigwigs like MS Dhoni and Shane Warne, and the Auction-2 had players with a lower base price. It took place in March.

Here are the five most expensive players in the inaugural IPL auction:

  • MS Dhoni – $1.5 million (Chennai Super Kings)
  • Andrew Symonds – $1.35 million (Deccan Chargers)
  • Sanath Jayasuriya – $9.75 lakh (Mumbai Indians)
  • Ishant Sharma – $9.5 lakh (Kolkata Knight Riders)
  • Irfan Pathan – $9.25 lakh (Kings XI Punjab)

Jacques Kallis ($9 lakh), Gautam Gambhir ($7.25 lakh), and Mohammad Kaif ($6.75 lakh) were the most expensive players of Royal Challengers Bangalore, Delhi Daredevils, and Rajasthan Royals, respectively.


Unsold Overseas Players in 2008 IPL Auction

Several popular overseas players went unsold in the first-ever IPL auction. The list mainly included New Zealand players. Meanwhile, a few Australia and Bangladesh cricketers had no takers in Auction-2.

Here’s a list of the top five overseas players who went unsold in the 2008 IPL auction:

  1. Mohammed Yousuf
  2. Mohammad Ashraful
  3. James Franklin
  4. Brad Hodge
  5. Chris Martin


Top 5 Most Expensive Under-19 Players in the 2008 IPL Auction

The auction took place right after the 2008 Under-19 World Cup, which took place in Malaysia. India won the tournament, beating South Africa, which meant the limelight was well and truly on the future Indian superstars. Most of them were picked up for USD 50,000 by different franchises. In retrospect, the most notable ones were Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja.

Here are the most expensive Under-19 players franchise-wise:

  1. Abhinav Mukund – $50k (Chennai Super Kings)
  2. Pradeep Sangwan – $50k (Delhi Daredevils)
  3. Ajitesh Argal & Tanmay Srivastava – $50k (Kings XI Punjab)
  4. Siddarth Kaul – $50k (Kolkata Knight Riders)
  5. Saurabh Tiwary – $50k (Mumbai Indians)
  6. Ravindra Jadeja – $50k (Rajasthan Royals)
  7. Virat Kohli – $50k (Royal Challengers Bangalore)

Deccan Chargers didn’t sign any players from the under-19 draft.

Concluding Thoughts

The IPL 2008 auction was one of a kind. It was the first time the world of Indian sports had seen something like this. The strategies used in these auctions also helped the owners, and they would pick and choose from whatever happened and use it strategically in the coming years.