As Australia looks set to level the four-match Test series in Perth, the attention quickly turns to another major event – the auctions of the Indian Premier League to be held on December 18 at Jaipur.
When does the auction start and how to watch it live
The auction for the 2019 edition of the IPL will start at 3:30 pm local time and 11 am BST.
Star Sports 1, Star Sports Select 1, Star Sports Hindi 1, Star Sports Telugu 1, Star Sports Tamil 1 and Star Sports First will provide the live television coverage of the auction. The live streaming will be available on Hotstar.
IPL 2019 auction players' watch list
The auction will see 346 players go under the hammer with 70 slots up for grabs across eight franchises that have a combined salary cap of Rs 145 crore to shell out.
While Chennai Super Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad look largely settled, expect teams like Delhi Capitals and Kings XI Punjab to have an active day in Jaipur. Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore, on the other hand, will look to bolster their squad with smart buys.
The players in this auction have been categorised into three groups, namely Indian international players, foreign players, and uncapped Indian players. Here are some of them who could multiply their bank balance by tomorrow evening.
Indian international players
Mohammed Shami – The fast bowler dished out a vicious barrage of bouncers to the Australians at Perth today and his spell of 6-56 is bound to attract some suitors at the auction who are in dire need of Indian fast bowlers. Expect Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab to go in for the 28-year-old who will be looking to prove his worth in IPL in order to get selected for India's 2019 World Cup squad.
Jaydev Unadkat – Indian fast bowlers are extremely important in a team and Unadkat's availability will entice the likes of Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Capitals and Kings XI Punjab. These franchises lack in the fast bowling department and might bring in Unadkat with the hope that he can replicate his good showing from the 2016 edition of the IPL.
Brendon McCullum & Nicholas Pooran – Although the two are at the opposite ends of their careers, they offer the same dynamics to their teams. Both are destructive opening batsmen who are also wicket-keepers. There are a couple of teams who will be looking at these players considering the unavailability of English and Australian players. Expect Kolkata Knight Riders to definitely go in for one of them while teams like Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore will also be keeping a keen eye on them.
Shimron Hetmeyer – He announced himself to the Indian fans while touring with the Windies and is another player who will be available for the entire duration of the tournament. A middle-order batsman who has the ability to clear any boundary in the world, Hetmeyer will draw close attention from Delhi Capitals, Kings XI Punjab and perhaps even Royal Challengers Bangalore who have a top-heavy batting unit.
Sam Curran – He seemed to be auditioning for the IPL as a Test cricketer against India when they toured England. Curran is an exciting prospect who can score quick runs and contribute with the ball, which is priceless in T20 cricket. At 20, he could also become a long-term investment. Expect Royal Challengers Bangalore, Rajasthan Royals, Kings XI Punjab, and Delhi Capitals to go in for Tom Curran's younger brother. He could be the talk of the auction once things are over.
Lasith Malinga & Dale Steyn – Both of them did not play in the last IPL but have once again started playing competitive cricket and there is one team that could do with either's services – Kolkata Knight Riders. The Kolkata franchise has released the Australian duo of Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson. Thus, they will be keen to add international experience in their fast bowling department on an Eden Gardens pitch that assists quick bowlers.
Indian uncapped player
Shivam Dube – This man might just be the talk of the auction when the dust settles. He has set the Mumbai cricketing circles alight courtesy his performances in the T20 Mumbai League. Dube is one of those players who can contribute with both, bat and ball. He can easily clear the boundary ropes and is a handy medium pace bowler. At just Rs 20 lakh, his base price is very appealing too. Every team will be having a close look at him with the highest bidder acquiring his services.