The most expensive player of the Inaugural WPL
Smriti Mandhana, an Indian batter, cost Royal Challengers Bangalore INR 3.4 crore, making her the most expensive purchase in the first Women’s Premier League auction in Mumbai (USD 415,000 approx). She was also the first player to be put up for bid on Monday at the auction.
In addition to purchasing allrounders Ellyse Perry for INR 1.7 crore and Sophie Devine at her basic price of INR 50 lakh (about USD 61,000), RCB spent nearly 50% of their INR 12 crore budget on three players in the first marquee batch (USD 207,000 approx).
Then, for INR 1.9 crore, they signed powerful 19-year-old wicketkeeper Richa Ghosh, who participated in India’s successful Under-19 World Cup campaign last month (USD 232,000 approx).
Harmanpreet Kaur was acquired by Mumbai Indians for INR 1.8 crore after the team, unable to acquire Mandhana, outbid RCB and Delhi Capitals for her services (USD 220,000 approx). Pooja Vastrakar, an all-around player, and Yastika Bhatia were two additional high-profile Indian additions for Mumbai (USD 183,000 approx).
At INR 2.6 crore, all-arounder Deepti Sharma was the second-most expensive Indian (USD 317,000 approx). She will take the field for the UP Warriors, a team that will be based in her native Uttar Pradesh. Additionally, the Warriors spent a lot on Tahlia McGrath, India’s Devika Vaidya, and Shabnim Ismail, each for INR 1.4 crore (about USD 171,000). (USD 122,000 approx).
Gardner, Nat Sciver Brunt’s most expensive abroad players
The No. 1 all-rounder in women’s T20Is, Ashleigh Gardner, received the joint second-highest bid of INR 3.2 crore (about USD 390,000) from Gujarat Giants, along with Nat Sciver-Brunt of England, who was purchased by Mumbai for the same amount.
Top 10 most pricey purchases
RCB’s Smriti Mandhana received $415,000
Ashleigh Gardner (Gujarat), $390,000
Natalie Sciver-Brunt (MI) $390,000
Deepti Sharma (UP) – $317,000
Jemimah Rodrigues (Delhi) $268,000.
Beth Mooney (Gujarat) $244,000
Shafali Verma (Delhi) $244,000.
Pooja Vastrakar (MI) $232,000.
Richa Ghosh (RCB) $232,000
Sophie Ecclestone (UP) $220,000
Money Spent and Players Purchased
Delhi Capitals INR 11.65 crore for 18 players.
RCB INR 11.90 crore for 18 players.
Mumbai Indians INR 12 crore for 17 players
UP Warriors INR 12 crore for 16 players
Gujarat Giants INR 11.95 crore for 18 players
Champions of the Under-19 World Cup
As international players, Shafali and Ghosh were included in the player caps and naturally went for the big bucks. Only a small number of the winning India Under-19 squad were selected since by the time the uncapped players were put up for bid, all five teams had already developed core groups of players. Titas Sadhu of Bengal (Capitals), Shweta Sehrawat of Delhi (Warriorz), Sonam Yadav of Uttar Pradesh (Mumbai Indians) and Parshavi Chopra (Warriorz), Shabnam MD of Andhra Pradesh (Giants), and Hurley Gala of Mumbai were among those who were purchased (Giants). Warriorz selected S Yashasri, a standby at the World Cup.
Associate Players are in short supply
Only four associate players—Tara USA’s Norris, the UAE’s Mahika Gaur, and Scotland’s Sarah and Kathryn Bryce—were chosen for the accelerated rounds due to insufficient demand.
The five franchises will compete in the WPL’s first season from March 4 to March 26.
All 22 games will take place at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai and the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai.