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IPL 2012 Auction Wrap: Chennai spend $2 million for Jadeja, Delhi buys Jayawardene

The highly anticipated Auction for Season 5 of Indian Premier League got underway on Saturday morning with high expectations. The big news at the start of the auction was the withdrawal of the Pune Warriors from the process and the announcement made by Sahara, the franchise owners, to pull out from all sponsorship of Indian cricket.

That left just 8 teams competing for the players up for grabs today, and a cloud of mystery surrounding the fate of the Pune players, who were not included in this auction.

The first set of 5 players drawn from the lot were categorized under the marquee player category. The first player under the lot was Brendon McCulum of New Zealand, the belligerent wicket keeper batsman, was sold to KKR for 900,000 dollars from a base price of 400000 USD.

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Top 10 Prospects in the IPL Season 5 Auction

The fifth edition of the glamorous Indian Premier League is set to get underway in April with its usual glitz and glow; but before that drawing eyeballs will be the IPL Auction on 4th February. The disqualification of Kochi Tuskers has thrown all of its players in the market again, and the other nine teams will be shelling out their dollars chosing from amongst 144 players who will be going under the hammer.

The teams have been permitted to increase their squads from 30 to 33 players, with an additional spot also thrown open for foreigners giving teams more reason to loosen their purse strings in the auction.

After examining the open slots available with each team, and their need for talent, here's a look at what we think might be the top ten deals that will be making news come Saturday:

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Kevin O'Brien excited about prospect of IPL debut

kevin_obrien2Kevin O'Brien, the talented all-rounder in the Irish national cricket team, who entertained Indian audience with a blistering 100 off just 50 balls in the 2011 World Cup against England (the fastest in WC history) is in the auction pot for IPL's Season 5 and we at TheSportsCampus managed to catch up with the Blonde Bomber.

Kevin O'Brien is the youngest of six children in his family and started his cricketing career at the Railway Union Sports Club in Ireland along with his elder brother Niall O' Brien, who also plays with him for the nationalteam. His father Brendan also played for Ireland for the most part of 15 years, starting from 1966 and he too started his career playing for the Railway. Kevin played for the Irish Under 19 team in the Junior World Cup of 2004 and performed really well to take his team through to the semi-finals of the plate division, where they were eventually beaten by Australia. Following that successful campaign with the Junior side he joined the MCC young cricketers academy also in 2004, a move that catapulted him into the national side a few years later.

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30 Players to watch in the IPL Season 5 Auction

In the midst of a dreadful Indian tour down under and a similar course for England in the Middle-East, here comes the richest and the most glamorous cricket tournament, though not necessarily of earth shattering quality. Come the 4th of February, it will become crystal clear which players are going to be involved with which franchise with the focus of attention being the newly released players from Kochi Tuskers Kerala, whose team has been removed following some legislative and financial issues with the IPL governing body.

Some other players, including a few Englishmen have also been put up for Auction. Not surprisingly, no Pakistanis are named in the auction with Azhar Mahmood, a former Pakistan all rounder slated as an English cricketer. Almost all the franchises have a $2million kitty, the exceptions being Royal Challengers Bangalore and Pune Warriors, who have spent some amount from that bucket on retaining Chris Gayle and Sourav Ganguly respectively.

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