IPL maiden draft: Dhoni to Pune, Raina to Rajkot
Kolkata-based businessman Sanjiv Goenka owned Pune franchise, New Rising picked up Mahendra Singh Dhoni as their first player for Rs.12.5cr in the first-ever player draft of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in Mumbai. New Rising chose Ajinkya Rahane as their 2nd choice. Keshav Bansal, the investor in the Rajkot franchise, chose Suresh Raina as his first choice followed by Ravindra Jadeja.
Justice Lodha Committee was appointed by Supreme Court in January 2015 to inquire into IPL fixing and betting scandal. It was to decide on the quantum of punishment for the errant IPL officials and the two franchises- Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals.
The promoters of Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals had been suspended for two years from the IPL by the Supreme Court-appointed panel headed by former CJI RM Lodha. It was left to BCCI and the two promoters of the suspended franchises to work out the way forward, to decide if the teams would be in a two-year limbo or play under different ownership.
The IPL Governing Council in August, proposed on having two new teams for just two years from the next season onwards. The Governing Council took the decision after going through the recommendations of the Working Group.
Top five players from each of the suspended franchises, CSK and RR, will be allowed to be picked by the two new franchises for the next two years of the IPL. These ten players will be picked by the new franchises through a draft system from a pool of 50. The remaining players of the suspended teams will be included in the auction pool.
The new teams will be chosen through reverse bidding process where the base price was set at Rs.40 crore and bidders had to quote an amount less than that. This means the BCCI will pay a maximum of Rs.40 crore from central revenue pool to the new owner. If a potential owner lists a bid price of Rs.25 crore, BCCI would save Rs.15 crore.
Five bids were finally submitted after more than 20 companies including Vodafone, Star India, Videocon, NDTV, Set Max, etc had shown initial interest by picking up application papers. Chettinad Cements, Axis Chemicals, RPG Properties, Intex and Sanjeev Goenka were the five bidders who participated in the process. Interstingly Chettinad Cements is owned by a group led by ex-BCCI president AC Muthiah.
The BCCI will not charge the two new owners any franchise fee, unlike the other six teams that have been paying a fee since 2008.
New teams from Pune and Rajkot will feature in the IPL 2016 and 2017, replacing Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals. The Pune franchise was bought by Kolkata-based businessman Sanjiv Goenka's company New Rising and Rajkot bid was won by Intex mobiles. While New Rising will pay Rs.10 crore per year to the BCCI, Intex Mobiles will pay Rs.16 crore for the two-year deal.
For the first time, Dhoni and Raina will play for rival teams in the IPL. Both Rajkot and Pune have been granted a limited purse of Rs.66 crores to form their squads for the season.