Stokes, Mills command huge fees in IPL auction


Ben Stokes and Tymal Mills were the big winners in Monday's Indian Premier League auction, the England duo commanding record fees for international players in the competition.

Powerful all-rounder Stokes, named as England's new Test vice-captain last week, was bought by Rising Pune Supergiants for a whopping INR 14.5 crore (£1.7million).

That price represents the second-most expensive fee in IPL history, Yuvraj Singh having been purchased for INR 16 crore (£1.9m) by Delhi Daredevils two years ago.

Supergiants owner Sanjiv Goenka said of Stokes: "He's a complete player. He completes our squad. We were lacking this one genre of player in our team. We have many heroes, but this is the one hero that we were lacking.

"It was a very conscious strategy. We knew he was going to go [for an] expensive [fee]. We pretty much knew that we were not going to get him for below this price."

Mills, meanwhile, benefited from Mitchell Starc's late withdrawal from the tournament as he was snapped up by Royal Challengers Bangalore - the team the Australia paceman had been due to represent - for 12 crore (£1.4m), more than 20 times his base price.

A left-arm fast bowler who impressed in England's recent Twenty20 series against India, whose skipper Virat Kohli is the captain of Bangalore, Mills has been forced to focus solely on the shortest form of the game after being diagnosed with a rare spinal condition in 2015.

Having feared he may never play again, the 24-year-old is now set to be rewarded handsomely for his impressive T20 performances.

Other notable purchases on Monday saw New Zealand seamer Trent Boult picked up for 5 crore by the Kolkata Knight Riders, while Delhi Daredevils moved for two exciting quicks in Kagiso Rabada (5 crore) and Pat Cummins (4.5 crore).

Another England all-rounder, Chris Woakes, was picked up by KKR for 4.2 crore, while Mohammad Nabi and teenager Rashid Khan will become the first Afghan players in the IPL after being picked up by Sunrisers Hyderabad.