The Indian Premier League (IPL) auctions over the years have witnessed numerous occasions where franchises have gone for massive bids in order to get the players of their choice. While some have repaid the faith invested in them by the franchises, providing value for money with some blistering performances, some of them failed miserably to deliver the goods.
However, there have always been some players IPL auctions who are bought at pretty much bargain prices by the franchises but end up proving themselves better than most of the players signed for a greater fee than them.
Those players have turned out to be the real game changers for their respective franchises over the years making them fan favourites as well. Let us now have a look at five of those players who were bought at bargain prices but ended up smashing records in IPL history:
Shaun Marsh at Rs 12 Lakh ($30,000) to Kings XI Punjab in 2008
Kings XI Punjab bought Shaun Marsh, one of the best T20 batsmen in the world at present, at his base price of Rs 12 lakh back in the inaugural edition in 2008. And he now happens to belong to that rare list of players to have played for only one franchise ever since his IPL debut.
He turned out to be a smash hit for the franchise as he emerged as the highest run-getter in the tournament with 616 runs to his name in 11 matches at an average of 68.44, that also included one century and five scores of fifty-plus.
However, he did not have the same purple patch again in the coming years but has been more or less consistent. He crossed the 500 run mark again when they retained him in the 2011 season scoring 504 runs in 14 matches at an average of 42.00.
He was bought once again after being released in the 2014 auction but at a much higher price of Rs 2.20 crore ($366,000). Although his performances still haven't been eye catchy since that year, he has been pretty consistent scoring 574 runs in 21 matches at an average of 44.15 between 2014 and 2018.
Shane Watson at Rs 50 lakh ($125,000) to Rajasthan Royals in 2008
Just when Shane Watson was falling out of favour with the Australian selectors with his career marred by injuries, the IPL turned out to be his saviour. The Rajasthan Royals bought him for just Rs 50 lakh in the auction of the inaugural edition in 2008.
He was adjudged the 'Player of the Series' for his all-round contributions to the Royals' title-winning campaign. He scored 472 runs with the bat and accounted for 17 wickets in 2008.
He looked in decent touch in the upcoming years before producing something similar to 2008 once again in 2013. He scored 543 runs with the bat and took 13 wickets in that season.
Good years followed ahead as well with the Royals. However, it was finally in 2016 that he left the Royals and was once again bought in the auctions by RCB for Rs 9.5 crore, the highest bid by a franchise in that season
Andre Russell at Rs 60 lakh ($97,000) to Kolkata Knight Riders in 2014
The Kolkata Knight Riders must have been very happy when they got the West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell at a bargain price of Rs 60 lakh in 2014.
They were very lucky to get him at that price considering his T20 potential. However, it was his mediocre performance for the Delhi Daredevils in the previous two seasons that made franchises disinterested in him. But, Russell proved his abilities this time.
Although he played just a couple of matches in 2014, he flourished in the 2015 season scoring 326 runs and taking 14 wickets in 13 matches. He carried his good form into the 2016 season where he was impressive particularly with the ball claiming 15 wickets in 12 matches at an average of 19.40, economy if 7.97 and strike rate of 14.60.
A one year doping violation made him miss the 2017 season. However, he is back this season and has been retained by KKR.
Yuzvendra Chahal at Rs 10 lakh ($16,100) to Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2014
RCB bought Chahal at his base price in 2014. He had spent three quite years with the Mumbai Indians playing only two matches. However, his switch to RCB changed his fortune.
He claimed 12 wickets in the 2014 season and was the team's highest wicket-taker in 2015 and 2016 claiming 23 and 21 wickets respectively. He accounted for 14 wickets in 2017 as well, and has been the second-highest wicket-taker in the franchise's history.
Mitchell McClenaghan at Rs 30 lakh ($49,000) to Mumbai Indians in 2015
The Kiwi left-arm seamer has been a real strike force for the Mumbai Indians since they picked him up at the auction at his base price if Rs 30 lakh in 2015.
He rewarded them that season with 18 wickets in 12 matches and was instrumental in the finals, defending 202 against the Chennai Super Kings with a fabulous spell of 3/25. He claimed 17 wickets in the 2016 edition too emerging as Mumbai's highest wicke- taker. And he once again accounted for 19 wickets last year in Mumbai's title-winning campaign.