Cricket enthusiasts have a significant date to mark on their calendars as the Womens Premier League (WPL) gears up for its 2024 edition players’ auction in Mumbai on December 9, according to a repor. The upcoming auction promises to be a riveting event with an additional purse of Rs 1.5 crore being made available to all five teams, supplementing the balance carried over from the previous auction and recent player releases.
A total of 30 slots, including nine overseas players, will be up for grabs in this auction. Teams recently unveiled their retention lists, with 60 players, including 21 overseas stars, being retained. Simultaneously, 29 players were released from their squads, setting the stage for a competitive bidding war to secure the services of the top talents.
In the inaugural season of the WPL, each team was entrusted with Rs 12 crore to build their squads. However, only Mumbai Indians and UP Warriorz fully utilized this budget, while Gujarat Giants, Delhi Capitals, and Royal Challengers Bangalore had varying amounts left as balance.
Gujarat Giants, finishing at the bottom in the inaugural season, possess the highest purse at Rs 5.95 crore, having released half their squad. With ten slots to fill, including three overseas players, Giants aim for a strong comeback in the upcoming edition. Meanwhile, UP Warriorz, who secured a mid-table finish and playoff qualification, boast a purse of Rs 4 crore to fill five slots, including an overseas player.
Star-studded Royal Challengers Bangalore, featuring the likes of Smriti Mandhana, Sophie Devine, and Ellyse Perry, look to bounce back from a less-than-ideal performance last season with a purse of Rs 3.35 crore. They aim to fill seven slots, including three overseas players. Delhi Capitals, the runners-up from the inaugural season, have a budget of Rs 2.25 crore to fill three slots, including one overseas player.
Defending champions Mumbai Indians find themselves with the smallest purse at Rs 2.1 crore as they prepare to fill five slots, including one overseas player. The strategic distribution of funds and player selections will be crucial for each team in shaping a competitive squad for the upcoming season.
The inaugural WPL earlier this year garnered widespread acclaim, featuring top cricketers from around the world in a 22-match affair played at three venues in Mumbai. While the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is yet to announce details about the next season, anticipation is high among fans for what promises to be another thrilling edition of women’s cricket.
Looking back at the previous auction, the WPL witnessed substantial bids, with seven players fetching bids as high as Rs 2 crore. Notably, Smriti Mandhana, Ashleigh Gardner, and Nat Sciver-Brunt crossed the three-crore mark, adding an extra layer of excitement to the auction dynamics. As cricket enthusiasts eagerly await the upcoming auction, the stage is set for another chapter of women’s cricket to unfold in grandeur.