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New trend in IPL a sign of our times

cricket Updated: Jan 18, 2011 22:51 IST
Amrit Mathur
Amrit Mathur
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

The auction is done but the big story of the IPL is not Gautam Gambhir's amazing lottery or the shocking rejection of Sourav Ganguly. The real surprise is the sudden rise of domestic uncapped players.

With demand driving value, they are more precious than established foreign cricketers and thus the mad scramble to get them on board.

Two legends of Indian cricket, tasked to sign domestic players, found out to their horror that the ground reality had changed dramatically. One was aghast that calls went unanswered, SMSs ignored and messages through contacts failed to get a response.

The experience of another was equally unpleasant. The junior players he reached out to, came on the line, heard the sales talk about the IPL platform but were quick to come to the point. What's the deal, they asked with impatience. The message, loud and clear: let us talk if the contract is in excess of a crore a year.

The incidents are telling indicators of trends in Indian cricket. These young players belong to an aggressive young India which is confident and has an attitude.

Within this front-foot mindset, respect for seniors is a minor consideration and advice from elders a nuisance which has to be tolerated. So, crucial career-impacting decisions are made on practical terms without sentiment coming in the way.

Commercial considerations are supreme, which is understandable because cricket is the ultimate passport to riches. In the previous three years of the IPL, the known stars lucked out by securing top dollars for their services while the domestic players missed out.

The market has since undergone a price correction and it is time for them to make a quick buck. IPL regulations put artificial caps on salaries for these players based on their Ranji experience, but the in-demand stars have moved and signed deals that reflect their genuine worth.