Pawan Sehrawat emerged as the most expensive player in the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL), fetching a bid worth Rs. 2.26 crore from Tamil Thalaivas on Friday, the first day of the player auction ahead of the franchise-based league’s ninth edition.
While Vikash Khandola (Rs. 1.70 crore, Bengaluru Bulls) – whose joy of earning the highest bid lasted barely few minutes – and Fazel Atrachali of Iran (Rs. 1.38 crore, Puneri Paltan), the most expensive overseas signing in PKL, and Guman Singh (Rs. 1.215 crore, U Mumba), were the other crorepatis on Friday evening, Sehrawat stole the show by breaching the Rs. 2-crore mark.
Thalaivas and U Mumba appeared to be waiting to pounce on the celebrated raider. Haryana Steelers started the bidding with an opening bid of Rs. 1 crore despite his base price of Rs. 30 lakh, Thalaivas entered late and walked away with the biggest signing.
Thalaivas exhausted 56.5 per cent of its total salary purse of Rs. 4.40 crore for the season. They went into the auction, after retentions, with a purse of Rs 2.83 crore
Pardeep Narwal, whose record of Rs. 1.65 crore was overhauled twice on Friday, was retained by UP Yoddhas with a Final Bid Match process for Rs. 90 lakh. The Yoddhas seemed to have achieved its objective of price correction with regard to the reliable raider.
Atrachali will be joined by his Iran teammate Mohammad Nabibakhsh at Puneri Paltan. The Pune outfit shelled out Rs. 87 lakh on Nabibakhsh, who was the first player to go under the hammer.
The two-auction, to be concluded on Saturday, has a total of 503 players registered for the auction. The players – hailing from 22 states in India and eight foreign nations – are divided in four categories. Category A had a base price of Rs. 30 lakh, while category B started with base price of Rs. 20 lakh. On Saturday, an accelerated auction for players from Category C (Rs. 10 lakh) and D (Rs. 6 lakh) will feature in the auction.
Top signings on Day 1
Pawan Sehrawat (Tamil Thalaivas) Rs. 2.26 crore
Vikash Khandola (Bengaluru Bulls) Rs. 1.70 crore
Fazel Atrachali (Puneri Paltan) Rs. 1.37 crore
*Guman Singh (U Mumba) Rs. 1.215 crore
Pardeep Narwal (UP Yoddhas) Rs. 90 lakh (FBM)
*Sunil Kumar (Jaipur Pink Panthers) Rs. 90 lakh
* base price Rs. 20 lakh, others base price Rs. 30 lakh