Trinidad and Tobago mystery spinner Sunil Narine, who shot into the cricket limelight last year was purchased by Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (ILP) for the fifth highest price behind India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene, India pacer Vinay Kumar and New Zealand batsman Brendan McCullum.
Narine was the biggest shock of the auction when he was snapped up for US$700,000 from a starting base price of US$50,000.
He made his international Twenty20 debut last year.
Emerging West Indies batsman Darren Bravo and all rounder Kevin Cooper were also picked up by the IPL franchises.
Bravo, who was in ESPN Circifino’s Test XI for 2011 and is now ranked in the top 20 of the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Test rankings, was picked up by Deccan Chargers at his base price of US$100,000, while Cooper, who like Narine, gave a good performance at both the Champions League last September and last month’s Caribbean T20 series where T&T retained their title was secured by Rajasthan Royals at his base price of US$50,000.
The Trinidad and Tobago players were just three of four new West Indians to play in the IPL. The other player bought was the dynamic Jamaican all-rounder Andre Russell, who was purchased for US$450,000 by the Delhi Daredevils from a base price of US$50,000.
The four will now join Chris Gayle (Royal Challengers Banglagore), Kieron Pollard (Mumbai Indians) and Dwayne Bravo Chennai Super Kings) as West Indians in the IPL.
This year’s IPL will run from April 4 to May 27, which will coincide with both the three-Test series against Australia (April 7-27) and the subsequent tour to England (May 5-June 24).