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Saurabh Duggal, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, December 11, 2012
The Hockey India League (HIL) will take more than a leaf out of the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL) when the players' auction takes place in the Capital on December 16.

Right from the franchise-based team model to setting the base price of players, HIL has borrowed quite a bit of 'technical know how' from its money-spinning cousin.

India skipper, Sardar Singh, and drag-flicker, Sandeep Singh, will command the highest base prize of Rs. 13.5 lakh each, while the maximum bid amount has been fixed at `32 lakh. Another member of the current India team, who is also one of the six icon players, SV Sunil, will come with a base price tag of Rs. 7.25 lakh.

Each franchise will have to pick one marquee player and give them a contract worth at least 115% of the highest successful bid for a player in the auction. The six marquee players are Sardar, Sandeep, Sunil (all India), Jamie Dwyer (Australia), Teun de Nooijer (the Netherlands) and Moritz Fuertse (Germany).

India vice-captain, VR Raghunath, will have a base price of Rs. 7 lakh, while Bharat Chhetri, who led the team at the London Olympics, will have a base price is `9.50 lakh. Olympian Ignace Tirkey and Birendra Lakra --- whom the Ranchi franchise would like to lap up to encash on their popularity in the region – have a base price of Rs. 7,25,000 and Rs. 4,75,000, respectively.

Pakistan skipper, Muhammad Imran, who led the team to bronze in the recently concluded Champions Trophy, will command a base price of `13,25,000. The minimum base price of a domestic player will be Rs. 1,50,000 (US$2800), while for the foreign players it has been fixed at Rs. 2,50,000 (US$ 5000).