Big names in the world of hockey such as Jamie Dwyer, Lloyd Norris-Jones, Kieran Govers and Indian stars such as Rupinder Pal Singh and Sardar Singh will be up for grabs during the Hockey India League auction on Thursday.
The six participating teams have already retained some players from their last season squad while letting go some, to have an improved squad for the fourth edition of the Hockey India League.
All six teams in the league will come to the auction with their homework done well. They would have chalked out strategies for the auction to buy players of their choice. But it also depends on the price they are willing to pay for the players.
Players such as Sardar and Dwyer, who have a base price of $20,000 and $30,000 each, are expected to be the major attractions during the auction on Thursday. One fails to understand why did the Delhi Waveriders and the Jaypee Punjab Warriors released Sardar and Dwyer, respectively, as they are two of the biggest names in international hockey.
Apart from the duo, Indian team players such as Thimmaiah and Rupinder, who also have a base price of $20,000 each, will be eyed by the bidders.
135 Indian and 142 foreign players from countries such as Australia, England, South Africa, Netherlands, Germany, Belgium and Korea will participate in the auction.
With new rules introduced for the fourth edition of the Hockey India League, the strikers are expected to be in huge demand during the auction. It will not be surprising if players such as Akashdeep Singh, Mandeep Singh, Govers, Aduard Arbos, Glenn Turner go in for huge money for their goal-scoring ability.
The new rules state that a field goal and a penalty stroke goal will be awarded as two goals (but not for a penalty stroke resulting from a penalty corner).
Such rules are going to make the Hockey India League much more interesting.
India captain Sardar Singh is very excited with the new rules.
"The new regulations for the upcoming edition will bring in new strategies and make the game more exciting and spectacular. The new regulations will definitely encourage more attacking and skilful hockey. On the other hand, it might slightly put the drag-flickers on a disadvantage as their penalty corner conversions would change the course of the game at any given point. It is a new regulation and all are excited to see the results and let's see how it is implemented on field and fans reaction on it," Hockey India official website quoted Sardar Singh as saying.
Where to Watch live
Hockey India League Auction is scheduled to start at 9am IST on Thursday with live TV coverage in India on DD Sports and live streaming here.