Bangladesh Premier League January 18, 2012

Local players in line for jackpot in BPL auction

ESPNcricinfo previews the Bangladesh Premier League, on the eve of the player auction in Dhaka
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The landscape of cricket in Bangladesh is set to be altered on January 19, when 180-odd cricketers go under the hammer during the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) player auction in Dhaka. The prospect of Chris Gayle, Shahid Afridi and Kieron Pollard being fought for by the six BPL franchises, who can spend up to $2 million each, is exciting, but it is the potential for a few Bangladesh cricketers to change their fortune through unprecedented riches that will bring fervor to the event.

On Thursday morning, the Radisson Blu Water Garden Hotel, the venue for the auction, will be buzzing with organisers, team owners and the media. The "open bidding" conducted by Cyrus Madan - better known in India as a horseracing expert and commentator - will take place behind closed doors. Each franchise will have six representatives seated at different tables, as it is for the IPL. It begins at 10.30 am and will be telecast live on Channel 9, a Bangladesh television channel.

The six franchises were bought for prices ranging between $1.01 million and $1.2 million, with SQ Sports picking up Chittagong for the highest value during the auction on January 10. SQ Sports had previously run the Chittagong Tigers side in the Port City Cricket League. Orion Group bought the Khulna franchise for $1.10 million, Shakib Al Hasan's presence as the icon player being the drawing card for a leading industrial conglomerate.

The BPL governing council released a list of 176 players, both international and local, a week ahead of the auction but are likely to update both sets before the hammer falls. Afridi, Pollard, Dwayne Bravo and Abdul Razzaq are the marquee names up for auction at a base price of $100,000. Some of the other players in the auction are Scott Styris, Shoaib Malik, Chaminda Vaas, Muttiah Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis and Azhar Mahmood. Gayle, Dirk Nannes and Herschelle Gibbs will be available for a few matches.

The Zimbabwean contingent includes their captain Brendan Taylor, who is in the A category, while Vusi Sibanda and Stuart Matsikenyeri are in the B category. Taylor will join the competition five days after it begins on February 10. The base prices for categories B and C are $50,000 and $30,000.

The team owners, most of whom aren't known faces on the cricket circuit in Dhaka, have hired ex-cricketers as consultants and most have finalised the coaching staff. They can buy up to eight overseas players with at least one from an Associate nation. A maximum of five overseas players are allowed in a XI.

The six icon players - Shakib, Tamim Iqbal, Shahriar Nafees, Mohammad Ashraful, Mushfiqur Rahim and Alok Kapali - could also feature in the auction, though their salary is not yet confirmed because the BPL governing council was asked to review their cost (5% more than highest paid player in franchise) by some of the teams. Among the listed local players, Mahmudullah, Abdur Razzak, Nasir Hossain, Junaid Siddique, Imrul Kayes and Mashrafe Mortaza will have their bidding start at $45,000.

A Bangladeshi player, who earns no more than 1 million Taka from first-class cricket and the Dhaka Premier League, could hit a massive payday since the base price of category C is about 1.6 million Taka.

For category A players, the bidding will increase by $15,000, while there will be raises of $10,000 and $5000 for categories B and C. BCB director Mahbubul Anam is the commissioner and will be called to resolve disputes if any should arise.

A franchise will be allowed to spend up to $2 million in the auction, though rumours abound that some of them have already negotiated with players, making the auction redundant. The admission by former cricketer turned commentator Athar Ali Khan, who is also a Rajshahi team consultant, that they have contacted players has cast a shadow over the bidding process.

"We will be very strict with underhand deals," BPL secretary Sirajuddin Mohammad Alamgir said. "We have been hearing of these rumours but we won't let it happen. There will be strict punishments for franchises and players, so I hope they refrain."

Mohammad Isam is senior sports reporter at the Daily Star in Dhaka

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Abdurrazaaq on January 19, 2012, 9:39 GMT

    @redneck, I have to disagree with you. Surely Bangladesh is not the greatest Test team as well as ODI team but lets face it, as much as we all try an deny it, T20 is the future of cricket, and Bangladesh is taking a step in the right direction by starting a really competitive T20 league. The IPL has done wonders to the young Indian cricketers and surely the same would happen with the Bangladeshi's.

  • on January 19, 2012, 9:26 GMT

    we are with the dhaka what abt u guyz

  • on January 19, 2012, 9:01 GMT

    BPL is just to start its journey.... don't starts judging right now... think positive.... :)

  • on January 19, 2012, 8:32 GMT

    what would u pay for afridi and gayle

  • on January 19, 2012, 7:41 GMT

    This is a big turning point for Bangladesh cricket...

  • Abdurrazaaq on January 19, 2012, 7:29 GMT

    I always felt that Bangladesh has the capacity of being a really good T20 team, this league will improve the quality of their players, gaining on experience by playing with players such as Afridi, Gayle + Razzaq etc etc. This league is going to be brilliant and happy for the Bangladesh fans, they will experience some really exciting cricket!!!

  • on January 19, 2012, 7:27 GMT

    I think Bangladesh Cricket Board first looking for Good First Class Structure. Then they goes to other formats.

  • redneck on January 19, 2012, 6:26 GMT

    haha for a nation that cant win a test, i think they should be working out a better first class structure. if they want to waste their time on 20/20 then im sure ireland would be more than happy to take their test spot. frankly india, aus, eng etc can focus players on ipl/bigbash or whatever as they already have the know how to play test cricket. bangledesh on the other hand rarely look like a test outfit when playing, making their best players focus on hit and giggle stuff wont help the test cause at all!

  • on January 19, 2012, 5:30 GMT

    I am from Pakistan I love Pakistan team along with that I respect and love cricket as much. Bangladesh I agree have talent as we have seen in the recent matches when they played Pakistan not to forget when Bangladesh won 5-0 playing with England in England. The investment of money along with players in this BPL will be rewards for the game of cricket and talent to be shown in ways that many viewers have not seen. India started with IPL into ICL look at it now money comes like season each year fact of finding talent with money cap is always on the positive end. BPL will be positive not just for Bangladesh players along with players that are international market. As I said I love Pakistan as much as I love game to Cricket so best of luck and all my wishes go with BPL & its owners. Lets hit a sixer or be bowled time to play.

  • Dr_Van_Nostrand on January 19, 2012, 4:42 GMT

    Associate players! Very good decision. Ten Doeschate, Rizwan Cheema, Mhmmd Shazad, Paul Stirling, van de Westheisen (from Namibia)...would all be good buys for a t20 team.

  • Abdurrazaaq on January 19, 2012, 9:39 GMT

    @redneck, I have to disagree with you. Surely Bangladesh is not the greatest Test team as well as ODI team but lets face it, as much as we all try an deny it, T20 is the future of cricket, and Bangladesh is taking a step in the right direction by starting a really competitive T20 league. The IPL has done wonders to the young Indian cricketers and surely the same would happen with the Bangladeshi's.

  • on January 19, 2012, 9:26 GMT

    we are with the dhaka what abt u guyz

  • on January 19, 2012, 9:01 GMT

    BPL is just to start its journey.... don't starts judging right now... think positive.... :)

  • on January 19, 2012, 8:32 GMT

    what would u pay for afridi and gayle

  • on January 19, 2012, 7:41 GMT

    This is a big turning point for Bangladesh cricket...

  • Abdurrazaaq on January 19, 2012, 7:29 GMT

    I always felt that Bangladesh has the capacity of being a really good T20 team, this league will improve the quality of their players, gaining on experience by playing with players such as Afridi, Gayle + Razzaq etc etc. This league is going to be brilliant and happy for the Bangladesh fans, they will experience some really exciting cricket!!!

  • on January 19, 2012, 7:27 GMT

    I think Bangladesh Cricket Board first looking for Good First Class Structure. Then they goes to other formats.

  • redneck on January 19, 2012, 6:26 GMT

    haha for a nation that cant win a test, i think they should be working out a better first class structure. if they want to waste their time on 20/20 then im sure ireland would be more than happy to take their test spot. frankly india, aus, eng etc can focus players on ipl/bigbash or whatever as they already have the know how to play test cricket. bangledesh on the other hand rarely look like a test outfit when playing, making their best players focus on hit and giggle stuff wont help the test cause at all!

  • on January 19, 2012, 5:30 GMT

    I am from Pakistan I love Pakistan team along with that I respect and love cricket as much. Bangladesh I agree have talent as we have seen in the recent matches when they played Pakistan not to forget when Bangladesh won 5-0 playing with England in England. The investment of money along with players in this BPL will be rewards for the game of cricket and talent to be shown in ways that many viewers have not seen. India started with IPL into ICL look at it now money comes like season each year fact of finding talent with money cap is always on the positive end. BPL will be positive not just for Bangladesh players along with players that are international market. As I said I love Pakistan as much as I love game to Cricket so best of luck and all my wishes go with BPL & its owners. Lets hit a sixer or be bowled time to play.

  • Dr_Van_Nostrand on January 19, 2012, 4:42 GMT

    Associate players! Very good decision. Ten Doeschate, Rizwan Cheema, Mhmmd Shazad, Paul Stirling, van de Westheisen (from Namibia)...would all be good buys for a t20 team.

  • woodhaven on January 19, 2012, 4:39 GMT

    this kind of tournament once in a year will produce lots of new exciting cricketer. I am sure BPL will be a huge success if BCB can stay away from corrupt politicians

  • Bang_La on January 19, 2012, 4:38 GMT

    @Faruk Ahmed Majumdar , hold your horse. Jeopardy is already there!

  • TheBlackMonk on January 19, 2012, 4:24 GMT

    @Zalmai: Five foreign players per match isn't enough for you, then why should name it BPL let's change it to International Premier League!! Every decision is made on some objective and the objective here is to get the local player more experience of international gaming & also to ensure the healthy pocket of the organizer so that they can spend on building infrastructure (I hope they do). So, let's stop talking rubbish and respect on others. If you can't watch then don't.

  • ARad on January 19, 2012, 3:46 GMT

    If this would help the BD players to acquire skills from foreign players by being in the same dressing room and practice sessions, it will be great for the future of BD cricket. It can potentially help more youngsters to get interested in the game too. On the other hand, BD hasn't progressed much even a decade after gaining Test status and this can also become a distraction.

  • tauhid_aks on January 19, 2012, 3:40 GMT

    I think this will increase competitiveness in our cricket. All the best BPL.

  • RaMin90 on January 19, 2012, 1:28 GMT

    A lot of people say that Bangladesh should have used that money in investing in a 4 day game but I disagree and think what the BCB have done was very clever. First of all, this tournament is good for Bangladesh when it comes to T20 International because they don't play as much T20 and in order for them to excel at that level, tournaments such as the BPL will give the Bangladeshi players plenty of experience on how to play at T20 level. So ODI and T20 are covered by the BCB but there is still a problem with the longer format. Well that area will also be sorted because the money they make from the BPL will allow the BCB to invest in long domestic format for its players and that way the Bangladeshi players will play a lot more test matches besides the national cricket league. The BCB are very clever and hope everything goes well.

  • on January 19, 2012, 0:22 GMT

    Good decision from BCB and BLP for allowing players from associate nations. Many good players from there will have platform to perform.

  • on January 18, 2012, 20:37 GMT

    I dnt knw why people r still thinking negative bout bangladesh.... There r some talented players of bangladesh...And they hve got a chance to prove themselves.....I m sure dat it will b a big challenge for the teams of the champions league.. If any team of di bpl takes part in champions league..... So think positive....and b positive.....

  • on January 18, 2012, 20:07 GMT

    If I am the owner of one of the franchises then i would not pay more than $20000 for any Bangladishi player apart from shakib. They don't fit in the reliability list. I will always look at the players performance over the time I would not care where are from. therefore to make something more interesting the BPL should get more international players to attract the crowed and tell the Bangladishee players to watch how they play.

  • on January 18, 2012, 20:05 GMT

    Why is Adam Gilchrist's name not mentioned in the article ?

  • on January 18, 2012, 18:35 GMT

    A milestone for Bangladesh cricket

  • on January 18, 2012, 16:01 GMT

    It's ok for BD cricket.....but India have a strong first class structure except IPL....So BCB Should focus on competitive first class cricket like BPL....,,Best of luck ...

  • on January 18, 2012, 15:56 GMT

    "At least one from associate nation" very good decision.

  • AcrobaticHenry on January 18, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    BOOM! BANGLA! BOOM! BOOM!...

  • on January 18, 2012, 14:26 GMT

    Good for Bangladesh players! A lot of players will be able to support their families. But also, please be careful that your country comes first. BPL should not be treated as a money making machine by the board and organisers- but I think it will be. Greed must not rule at the cost of Bangla cricket.

  • Jawwad123 on January 18, 2012, 13:37 GMT

    I don't understand why the BCB can't make first class cricket more interesting. It should also arrange other tournaments like the Ranji Trophy.

  • on January 18, 2012, 13:01 GMT

    great gud for bangladesh future.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • on January 18, 2012, 13:01 GMT

    great gud for bangladesh future.

  • Jawwad123 on January 18, 2012, 13:37 GMT

    I don't understand why the BCB can't make first class cricket more interesting. It should also arrange other tournaments like the Ranji Trophy.

  • on January 18, 2012, 14:26 GMT

    Good for Bangladesh players! A lot of players will be able to support their families. But also, please be careful that your country comes first. BPL should not be treated as a money making machine by the board and organisers- but I think it will be. Greed must not rule at the cost of Bangla cricket.

  • AcrobaticHenry on January 18, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    BOOM! BANGLA! BOOM! BOOM!...

  • on January 18, 2012, 15:56 GMT

    "At least one from associate nation" very good decision.

  • on January 18, 2012, 16:01 GMT

    It's ok for BD cricket.....but India have a strong first class structure except IPL....So BCB Should focus on competitive first class cricket like BPL....,,Best of luck ...

  • on January 18, 2012, 18:35 GMT

    A milestone for Bangladesh cricket

  • on January 18, 2012, 20:05 GMT

    Why is Adam Gilchrist's name not mentioned in the article ?

  • on January 18, 2012, 20:07 GMT

    If I am the owner of one of the franchises then i would not pay more than $20000 for any Bangladishi player apart from shakib. They don't fit in the reliability list. I will always look at the players performance over the time I would not care where are from. therefore to make something more interesting the BPL should get more international players to attract the crowed and tell the Bangladishee players to watch how they play.

  • on January 18, 2012, 20:37 GMT

    I dnt knw why people r still thinking negative bout bangladesh.... There r some talented players of bangladesh...And they hve got a chance to prove themselves.....I m sure dat it will b a big challenge for the teams of the champions league.. If any team of di bpl takes part in champions league..... So think positive....and b positive.....