A total of 409 players from 15 countries will go under the hammer at the inaugural Women’s Premier League (WPL auction) auction on February 13 in Mumbai. The BCCI said it had received a whopping 1525 registrations, out of which 246 Indians and 163 overseas players made the final list.
As many as 24 players – 14 overseas and 10 Indians – have listed themselves at the highest base price of INR 50 lakh (USD 60,400 approx.), including Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana, Deepti Sharma, Shafali Verma, Alyssa Healy, Ellyse Perry, Sophie Ecclestone, Sophie Devine and Deandra Dottin.
Apart from India, the final list includes players from Australia, England, New Zealand, South Africa, West Indies, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Ireland, Zimbabwe, and also eight Associate players from UAE, Hong Kong, Thailand, Netherlands and USA.
The five franchises will have a purse of INR 12 crore (USD 14.6 million approx.) each to spend on forming their teams. With each squad comprising between 15 and 18 players, a maximum of 90 players can be bought at the auction which starts at 2.30 pm IST. Each squad can contain up to six overseas players.
On January 25, the BCCI had unveiled the owners of Mumbai Indians, Delhi Capitals, Royal Challengers Bangalore, and the Adani Group and Capri global as the five successful bidders for teams in the WPL. While MI, DC and RCB bought teams based in Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru respectively, the Adani Group picked up Ahmedabad, and Capri Global got Lucknow. The sale of the five franchises earned the BCCI INR 4669.99 crore (USD 572.78 million approx).
Since then, some of the franchises have set about forming their team management to get auction-ready. Former captains of England and India, Charlotte Edwards and Jhulan Goswami, headline Mumbai’s coaching staff; former Australian batter Rachael Haynes is head coach at Adani’s Gujarat Giants with Mithali Raj as mentor. No coaching appointments have been announced yet for the teams from Bengaluru, Delhi and Lucknow.