In a historic turn of events at the IPL 2024 auction, Mitchell Starc emerged as the highest-ever signing in Indian Premier League history, securing a jaw-dropping INR 24.75 crores deal with the Kolkata Knight Riders. The left-arm pacer’s record-breaking signing surpassed the previous benchmark set by his compatriot Pat Cummins, who was bought by Sunrisers Hyderabad for INR 20.50 crores earlier in the same auction. Starc and Cummins became the first two players to breach the INR 20 crore-mark in salary, surpassing the INR 18.50 crores earned by Sam Curran in the previous year.
Starc, absent from the IPL for the past eight years, had previously been signed by the Knight Riders for INR 9.40 crores in 2018 but missed the season due to a leg injury. He was later released from his contract amid contractual disputes with Cricket Australia. This time, Starc’s acquisition by KKR involved a bidding war with Gujarat Titans, ultimately making him the most expensive player in IPL history.
“It’s obviously humbling to still, I guess, feel like I’m wanted or needed anyway,” Starc expressed to JioCinema. “So hopefully that experience that I’ve had for a few years now can translate into success… leading up to the IPL and, hopefully, add some of that to the KKR list.”
The auction also witnessed Cummins being actively pursued by Sunrisers Hyderabad and Royal Challengers Bangalore, with SRH securing his services with a winning bid. Despite his middling IPL record, Cummins had an exceptional year, leading Australia to victories in the ODI World Cup, the World Test Championship, and a drawn-away Ashes series.
The auction’s spotlight also shone on other notable signings, including Daryl Mitchell, Rachin Ravindra, and Travis Head. Defending champions Chennai Super Kings secured Mitchell’s services with a bid of INR 14 crores, while SRH signed Head for INR 6.80 crores following his century in the recent World Cup final against India.
Among the uncapped players, Sameer Rizvi became a significant earner, securing an INR 8.4 crores deal with CSK. The auction featured intense bidding wars for several uncapped Indian players, with notable signings including Shahrukh Khan, Kumar Kushagra, and others.
The 2024 IPL auction showcased a fierce battle for fast bowlers, emphasizing the significance of overseas pace options in team strategies. Alongside Starc and Cummins, several international and domestic talents found new homes, promising an exciting and competitive IPL season ahead.
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