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IPL Auction 2012: Best bargains and Teams that will return the happiest

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The player auction for season 5 of the Indian Premier League turned out to be a rather eventful one where all the teams seemed very choosy and very specific with their ambitions. There were some surprisingly expensive buys and some even more surprisingly frugal ones. Here is a team-wise view of how the auction eventually panned out.

Mumbai Indians:
The Mumbai Indians, as it turned out, will be pretty satisfied with the day's proceedings that saw Mukhesh Ambani's team come out with some fine players in their kitty for some very reasonable prices. Mitchell Johnson turned out to be not only Mumbai's best buy but also probably the best acquisition of the auction for just $300,000. Despite his long term injury, he is expected to play some part in this year's IPL and with his impressive track record in India, he is a perfect buy for a team like Mumbai who already boast of a good bowling unit with Malinga and Harbhajan in the squad. Johnson's exemplary athleticism to go with some handy power hitting down the order makes him a phenomenal asset to the side. Also, given Sri Lanka's international commitments during this season's IPL, he could be a handy replacement for the Slinga.

Herschelle Gibbs : Though aged 37, this fiery South African cricketer is a live wire on the field and is still very much a game changing stroke player. Having acquired his services for just the base price of $50,000, MI will be extremely happy. Along with the likes of Kieron Pollard, Andrew Symonds and Rohit Sharma he is most likely to be a good part of a formidable fielding unit, that is so crucial in this format. In fact, whether or not he features with the bat at all, you can be guaranteed he'll spend a large part of the season on the field!

RP Singh: Despite being out of favour with the Indian set up in recent times this man has been an exceptional IPL performer and is showing all signs of a bowler well on a comeback trail. Being an experienced Indian performer, he is always a handy buy to fill in the bowling line up. Mumbai have relied on Dhawal Kulkarni in recent seasons, and RP Singh is definitely a step p.

Robin Peterson and Thisara Perera: This overseas duo, were bought probably as stand buy options to this formidable team and are more than capable of playing a handy role in the shortest format in more than one facet of the game.

Chennai Super Kings: They put all their money i.e. a whopping $2 million into the purchase of the versatile Ravindra Jadeja, who is a welcome addition to this side, already filled with plenty of all-round options.  Being an Indian player, he will have a vital role to play in this side, in all three departments of the game. One hopes though that Jadeja's signing doesn't spell the end of game time for the excellent Shadab Jakati.

Delhi Daredevils: Their purchase of Mahela Jayawardene for $1.4 million was more of a necessity rather than a luxury as this side clearly lacks batsmen of this experience and calibre. There is no doubt he will lend plenty to the side in terms of batting and leadership. Doug Bracewell was certainly a bargain buy for just $50,000 and considering his ability as an allrounder in this format, he will only get better with time. Probaly starting ahead of him in the Delhi line-up will be West Indian Andre Russell, who will undoubtedly add a lot to Delhi, in all three departments of the game.

Rajasthan Royals: Like previous seasons in the IPL, the Royals preferred to keep a low profile in the auction buying the likes of Brad Hodge ($475,000), Sreesanth($400,000), Brad Hogg ($180,000) and Dinesh Chandimal ($50,000). They were all players in the moderate range but could lend plenty to this side that plays with a refreshing philosophy of blooding in young Indian players which was cultivated by ex-captain and mentor Shane Warne. These experienced players could be the ideal foil to the young talent present in the squad. They also managed to pouch an unknown foreign talent in the form of West Indian Kevin Cooper. Hogg especially is an interesting buy, and could well slot in where Shane Warne left off, and being a wrist spinner is likely to get plenty of turn on Indian tracks.

Deccan Chargers: The Chargers lost a couple of players in Kevin Pietersen, Pragyan Ojha to transfers prior to the auction and will be disappointed with their purchases. Parthiv Patel ($650,000), Darren Bravo ($100,000) and Daniel Harris ($70,000) seem to decent bargain buys but whether they will be enough to fill the void created due to the loss of some key players, remains to be seen.

Kolkata Knight Riders : A team filled with plenty of talented cricketers managed to add a couple more to its repertoire buy purchasing the highly talented Brendon MCcullum and the mysterious Sunil Narine. McCullum had one previous stint with this team without much success but will be hoping to turn that around this time with some explosive batting and some electrifying keeping/fielding under a changed set up. Sunil Narine when available is a good bowler to have considering his rather precarious variations that are hard to pick. They also managed to pick young rookie fast bowler from South Africa, Marchant De Lange, who could be a useful stand by if needed.

Royal Challengers Bangalore: They swooped in on a couple of decent bowling options in the auction by purchasing the ever-improving Vinay Kumar for a whopping $1 million while also acquiring the services of Sri Lankan Legend Muttiah Muralitharan for jus $220,000, who along with Daniel Vettori promises to form a mouth watering partnership.

Kings XI Punjab: Like the Royals, the Punjab team too were rather circumspect in their purchases as they decided to play the waiting game for a long time. But Ramesh Powar($160,000) and Azhar Mahmood ($200,000) could turn out to be fantastic buys. Both these players bring in a wealth of experience and are very good exponents of off-spin and swing bowling respectively, with the latter being a proven all-rounder in the English county championships. They also managed to pocket James Faulkner a T20 specialist from Australia, who might thrive in this low profile team.