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"It's tough to say what teams want": Khawaja, Guptill snubbed by IPL

Cricket

Some missed out, one banked a million dollars and others were just as thrilled with a maiden Indian Premier League call-up.

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As Australia completed a four-wicket ODI win over New Zealand in Wellington on Saturday, over half of the 14-man squad was being put under the hammer in Bangalore.

Mitch Marsh was the clear winner of both contests, named man of the match for a pressure-laden knock of 69 and earning a sweet $A1 million in the IPL auction.

Usman Khawaja posted his maiden ODI half-century but went unsold.

The auction always throws up surprises but Khawaja’s snub was among the most staggering given recent Twenty20 knocks of 109no, 62, 104no and 70 for Sydney Thunder.

New Zealand opener Martin Guptill, leading run-scorer of last year’s ODI World Cup, was another white-ball talent who bizarrely attracted no bids.

“Certainly, if I owned a team I would have picked Guptill,” NZ star Kane Williamson said.

“He’s playing amazing cricket… it’s tough to say what teams want. I’m not sure.

“I haven’t spoken to him about that. He’ll be fine.”

Marsh suggested his bonanza hadn’t come up in conversation with teammates.

“We didn’t speak about it at all. We just had a great win and got ourselves back in the series,” Marsh said.

“While the IPL is great, we’re in the middle of a one-day series and we’ve got a big Test series coming up.”

Adam Zampa, who will play in the cashed-up Twenty20 league for the first time after being sold for $62,000, disagreed slightly with his new Rising Pune Supergiants teammate.

“A few of the boys had a bit of a laugh about it [Marsh’s auction price] after the game,” Zampa said.

“It [the IPL] gets mentioned a bit here and there… but we’re concentrating on the game.”

Zampa, who wasn’t expecting to be sold, attracted no bids in the first round before Melbourne Stars coach Stephen Fleming pounced.

“My old mate Stephen Fleming at the Stars looked after me,” Zampa said of the Kiwi who was hired as mentor of new franchise Pune.

Zampa now has a chance to play alongside the likes of MS Dhoni, Steve Smith and Ishant Sharma.

Stars teammates Kevin Pietersen, Scott Boland and Peter Handscomb were also signed by Pune.

“We’ve got a good crew there… it’s exciting,” Zampa said.

“It’s just another stepping stone for me.”

Shane Watson attracted the highest price in the auction, going to Royal Challengers Bangalore for a cool $1.98 million.

-AAP

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