WPL Auction 2023: Top 5 most expensive buys

Fans witnessed the first-ever Women’s Premier League (WPL) player auction with five teams battling for the biggest names in T20 cricket on Monday (February 13). Five teams entered the auction with an INR 12 crore in a purse to spend on 409 players to form their teams for the inaugural season of one the most thrilling women’s T20 franchise leagues in the world.

Royal Challengers Bangalore made the first headline by spending a record amount to sign star Indian batter Smriti Mandhana and ended the auction with another big headline by signing Australia pace ace Megan Schutt at her base price. So, let’s take a look at the top five most expensive buys of WPL Auction 2023.

5. INR 2.0 crore – Beth Mooney, Shafali Verma

Mooney, arguably one of the current best batters in T20s, was sold to Gujarat Giants for a whopping price of INR 2.0 crore. Royal Challengers Bangalore, Mumbai Indians, and Delhi Capitals also joined the bidding war but the Giants came victorious.

Shafali Verma was always expected to grab a big contract after guiding India to a triumph in the inaugural Women’s U-19 T20 World Cup. Delhi Capitals and Royal Challengers Bangalore fought for her signature, with the former winning the race with a winning bid of INR 2.0 crore.

4. INR 2.2 crore – Jemimah Rodrigues

The Mumbai-born batter smashed match winnings 53* off 38 against Pakistan. India then went on to win the opening Women’s T20 World Cup 2023 clash, just a day before the auction. The knock helped the Indian star earn a big INR 2.2 crore deal with Delhi Capitals.

3. INR 2.6 crore – Deepti Sharma

India’s top-ranked bowling all-rounder bagged the third biggest deal of the day. Delhi Capitals and Gujarat Giants opened bids for Deepti, but UP Warriors put a winning bid of INR 2.6 crore.

2. INR 3.2 crore – Ashleigh Gardner & Natalie Sciver

The current no.1 T20I all-rounder Ashleigh Gardner was expected to fetch big bucks. However, no one thought that she will be among the highest earners at the end of the day. Mumbai Indians showed great interest in Gardner, but were beaten by Gujarat with a winning bid of INR 3.2 crore.

Natalie Sciver, the English ace all-rounder, was placed in the second round with an INR 50 lakh bracket. Once again, Mumbai Indians opened bid for Sciver and signed the player for INR 3.2 crore.

1. INR 3.4 crore – Smriti Mandhana

The top-ranked Indian batter was the first cricketer to under hammer in Mumbai. MI opened the bid for Smriti and were joined by Royal Challengers Bangalore with a counter bid. Both teams were involved in an intense bidding war, with RCB winning the player’s signature for INR 3.4 crore.