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Ground rules for the IPL Auction

With 77 players set to go under the hammer today in the DLF IPL Auction, the league lays down its guidelines based on which the auction will be conducted.

cricket Updated: Feb 20, 2008 09:51 IST

The DLF Indian Premier League on Tuesday, issued a set of uniform guidelines to all its eight franchisees giving them a clear overview of the process and rules of the DLF IPL Player Auction. The Player Auction will be a private auction, conducted by an independent professional auctioneer Mr. Richard Madley who will also be the sole arbiter as to all aspects of the Auction.

The auction is scheduled to take place at the Regal Ball Room of the Hilton Oberoi in Mumbai, on Wednesday February 20th 2008 and will commence at 11am. Each Franchise will have a table in the room with a computer screen provided. The auction will not be broadcast live as Sony is the exclusive broadcaster. However, Sony will release edited highlights of the auction to the media as breaking news at the end of each segment of the auction.

Format of the auction: The Auction will be an open auction with each player being individually put up for bidding by the franchises. The highest bid that is accepted by the auctioneer shall be the buyer at that price. There are around 78 players in the Auction – a combination of Indian national team and foreign cricketers. Each player has an annual "base player fee". The base player fee will be the fee at which the bidding for that player starts. This base player fee assumes that the player is available for the entire season of the DLF Indian Premier League season, including if applicable the Champions Tournament. This fee will be adjusted on a pro-rata basis, depending on the players availability for the DLF IPL season in the first year.

Each Franchise has a total "purse" of up to $5m that it can spend on the Auction for players for 2008. Franchises will not be able to make a bid for a player that would take them beyond this total purse.

Players in the Auction will be arranged into "sets" of approximately 12 according to their base player fee, their cricketing specialism and their expected availability for the 2008 DLF IPL season. Interestingly, if a player who on the day of the Auction, is expected to be unavailable in 2008 subsequently becomes available (e.g. through retirement, non-selection by national team or tour cancellation), provided offcourse that the player is able to obtain a No Objection Certificate for the 2008 season from his home board, such player may, at the DLF IPL's discretion, could become part of the relevant Franchise's squad for that season.

In advance of the Auction, Franchises will be issued a list of the players that will be auctioned, the composition of the sets and the order in which the sets will be auctioned. For each player, the following information will be included: name, nationality, specialism, base player fee, and expected "percentage availability" for the 2008 DLF IPL season. The minimum "percentage availability" for any player included in the Auction will be 25%. Thus even if a player is expected to be either completely unavailable or only available for less than four of the DLF IPL matches in 2008, 25% of the player fee bid for that player in the Auction will count against the $5m purse. For example, the purchase for $400,000 of a player, who is expected to be completely unavailable in 2008, will cause a deduction of $100,000 from the Franchise's overall $5m purse.

Within the sets, the order that players will be presented for auction will be determined by a random draw that will take place in the Auction room.

Each player will be the subject of an open auction with the auctioneer controlling the process. Bidders will raise a paddle to indicate a bid (only one official bidder per Franchise). Each bid will represent the player fee per season to be paid by the Franchise to the player for each of the seasons 2008, 2009 and 2010, ignoring any periods of unavailability. Once made, no bid may be withdrawn.

Bidding increments will be as follows:

bids up to $100,000 – increments of $5,000

bids from $100,000 to $250,000 – increments of $10,000

bids from $250,000 to $500,000 – increments of $25,000

bids in excess of $500,000 – increments at the auctioneer's discretion.

As each player is sold, the Franchise will be required to sign a form confirming the terms of the agreement (name of player, player fee agreed). The player fee will be deemed to include any fee that may be payable to the player's agent.

Following the conclusion of each set, there will be a break to allow Franchises time to re-evaluate their tactics.

Players for whom no bids are received when they are initially presented for auction will be placed in a final set and will be re-presented for auction once all of the initial sets have been concluded. Franchises may not buy foreign players in advance of the Auction (whether such players are amongst the list of players to be auctioned or otherwise).

After the Auction, Franchises are free to purchase additional foreign players subject to the franchises informing the BCCI / DLF IPL of any such additional foreign players. The BCCI/DLF IPL will approach the desired players on behalf of the Franchise in an attempt to negotiate the contracted fee up to an amount set by the Franchise, and will endeavour to obtain a No Objection Certificate from that player's home board. If more than one Franchise is interested in a particular player, the DLF IPL may hold a further Auction to determine which Franchise will sign that player. The fees paid to any such additional foreign players for 2008 (when added to the total player fees for 2008 committed by the Franchise in the Auction) must not exceed the maximum purse of $5m. Indian players who are not in the Auction can be signed at any time.

The player fees of any Icon players (at the date of publication of these rules, Tendulkar, Dravid, Ganguly, Yuvraj) – being 115% of the highest player fee in that Franchise's squad – will count towards the maximum purse of $5m.

The contract with the player will be for a fixed term of three years. The Franchise is obligated to sign both agreements in respect of players that it buys during the Auction. Note that the player fee is inclusive of the fee that is due to the player's agent.

DLF IPL Squad rules : Each DLF IPL franchise squad must have a minimum of 16 players per squad. This will include a maximum of 8 currently available foreign players per squad (any foreign players in a Franchise's squad who are not available for any reason will not count towards the total). Each franchise can have a maximum of 4 foreign players in the playing XI for each match.

The squad will additionally consist of a minimum 4 under 22 players (the catchment players and the Indian national players if so qualified can be counted for the purpose of this rule. Foreign players may not be counted for the purpose of this rule). These players must be under 22 years old on 1 April of the relevant season.