HOCKEY INDIA LEAGUE is conducting a fresh auction of players for the upcoming season of the League on September 17 at New Delhi. The six franchisee will bid for players from India, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, USA, England, South Africa, Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Scotland, Malaysia, Japan and Korea to complete their teams.
Earlier in August 2015, Hockey India League had provided all the franchisees the option to retain up 3 Indian and 3 Foreign players, while releasing the rest of the squad. A total of 277 players are listed for the auction and among them, 135 players are from India and 142 players belong to other leading hockey nations. Under the new Rules and Regulations, Franchisees can build a team of 20 players, which allows each franchisee to have 12 Indian players and 8 foreign players.
Defending Champions Ranchi Rays retained its total quota of 6 players including team captain Ashley Jackson along with Barry Middleton and Fergus Kavanagh. The three Indian stalwarts retained included Manpreet Singh, Birendra Lakra and Kothajit Singh. The players held back are known for their experience as well as delivering successfully under pressure situations which will help complement the new team that will come on board post the auctions.
On the other hand Runner-up team, Jaypee Punjab Warriors will be eyeing for the most suitable 9 Indian and 5 foreign players who will help complete the line-up. With the release of Jaap Stockmann the franchisee will also have to get a goalkeeper as agile and as world class as him. JPW for the upcoming actions has a pocket of USD 472,500, while they have already spent USD 252,500 on the players that they have retained. JPW had held back the entire quota of their six players including the agile SV Sunil along with the young and vibrant Satbir Singh and Varun Kumar. The foreign players retained boasts of the huge experience of the three Australian players – Chris Ciriello, Mark Knowles and Jacob Whetton.
Last season’s debutants, Dabang Mumbai held back only 3 players and released the rest of the squad for the auctions including Tom Boon. Retaining Harmanpreet Singh was expected and was the ideal choice. With the latter’s retention he is the only Indian retained in the side along with 2 foreign players – David Harte and Jeremy Hayward. With a kitty of USD 563,000, Dabang Mumbai has to pick 11 Indian and 6 Foreign players, while they have already spent USD 162,000 on the three retained players.
Delhi based Delhi Waveriders also held back their quota of 6 players including the experienced Simon Child, Tristan White and Steven Edwards along with the young brigade from India – Talwinder Singh, Yuvraj Walmiki and Surender Kumar. To bid for 9 Indian and 5 foreign players, the franchisee is left with USD 514,000 post spending USD 211,000 on the six players held back. DWR will be aiming to recreate the same magic team which left many in awe during the first two seasons.
Looking at playing their third edition next year, Kalinga Lancers has already decided to hold back Devindar Walmiki, Lalit Upadhyay and Gurjinder Singh. They are confident that the move will prove beneficial for the team in the long run keeping in mind that all three Indian players are regarded as the next Indian players to look out for on the astro-turf. Post the decision of holding on to young blood, the franchise went ahead to retain its dependable goalkeeper Andrew Charter along with Aran Zalewski who is known for his ability to surprise the opponents on the field because of his play. With USD 520,000 left in their kitty, the franchisee will look at creating the ideal team that they have been wanting since they made their debut in HIL 2014.
Uttar Pradesh Wizards on the other, held on to the experience of PR Sreejesh, Ramandeep Singh, VR Raghunath, Jolie Wouter and Edward Ockenden while releasing the rest of the team. With the already 6 most important players in place the franchisee will feel more confident in picking up young players who will complement and complete the team line-up during the auctions. Having spent USD 284,000, the franchisee has a kitty base of USD 441,000 to pick up their rest 15 players. UPW will look at having the best forwards as well as midfielders in place who will help support the defence which they have held back.
The HIL Auction 2015 will be conducted by renowned auctioneer Bob Hayton of London, who has 30 years of experience in this profession.
The HIL Auction 2015 will be held on 17 September 2015 at Hotel The Lalit in New Delhi.