Pune 7 Aces grab Carolina Marin in PBL auction

Sports Reporter
Tuesday, 9 October 2018

The Spaniard, who played a major role in helping Hyderabad Hunters win the title last year, would now shift base to Pune.

PUNE: Reigning Olympic champion Carolina Marin was on Monday bought by debutant PBL franchise Pune 7 Aces, while Indian stars Saina Nehwal and P.V.Sindhu were picked up by Hyderabad Hunters and North Eastern Warriors respectively during the Premier Badminton League auction in New Delhi on Monday.

The Spaniard, who played a major role in helping Hyderabad Hunters win the title last year, would now shift base to Pune. The new outfit were clearly gunning for the three-time world champion and were understandably delighted when the announcer pulled out a chit of their name in a draw of lot.

“I am very excited to be part of Pune team. Hyderabad has been like a second home for me. But now I am excited to be part the Pune team and explore this part of India,” said Marin after learning about the bid.

HOMEBOUND FOR SINDHU; SAINA IN NORTH EAST
Carolina Marin and PV Sindhu were expectedly the most sought after Icon Players as the two 2018 world championship finallists were picked by Pune 7 Aces and defending champions Hyderabad Hunters respectively.

The fourth season of PBL, organised by Sportzlive under the aegis of Badminton Association of India, will kick off in Mumbai from December 22, 2018.

With no retention or Right to Match (RTM) card at disposal, the Players’ Auction was always going to be a keen contest for teams to get the combination right while looking for that one Icon Player who can inspire them to bigger glory.

Indonesia’s Tommy Sugiarto became the highest paid non-Icon Player with the Dalmia Cement Group owned Delhi Dashers splurging INR 70 lakh for his services. The Delhi outfit won a tense battle with two other teams to acquire the World No 11, paying more than double his base price (INR 40 lakh above his base price.)

Among the Indians, rising doubles star Satwiksairaj Rankireddy was the top draw and Padmanabh Sports Pvt Ltd owned Ahmedabad Smash Masters outbid the Hyderabad Hunters to secure the youngster for INR 52 lakh, a massive jump from his base price of INR 15 lakh.

Given the strong pool of players in the auction, it was interesting to see the strategies the teams implemented to build their squad as three of these players could be retained for the next two seasons as well.

Marin and Sindhu were the obvious choice for almost all the teams. At least four teams raised the prize purse to INR 80 lakh, the maximum limit a team could bid for a player, before the players got assigned to the teams by a draw of lots.

While the Hunters lost their star performer from last year, they would be delighted to welcome home Rio Olympics silver medallist Sindhu. The 23-year-old, who was playing for Chennai Smashers for the last two seasons, will be playing for the home city for the first time and couldn’t hide her excitement.

Saina Nehwal will be seen plying her trade for the North-Eastern Warriors in the upcoming edition.

“It’s a great opportunity for me to get associated with the North Eastern Warriors. The fans over here are extremely passionate and I will try and give my best.”

SQUAD AND PRICE IN LAKHS (INR)
Hyderabad Hunters: Men’s Singles: Lee Hyun Il (60), Rahul Yadav Chittaboina (3), Mark Caljouw (7), Women’s Singles: PV Sindhu (80), Sai Uttejitha Rao (1), Men’s Doubles: Kim Sa Rang (45), Arun George (1), Bodin Issara (21), Mixed Doubles: Eom Hey Won (37), Meghana Jakkampudi (3)

Mumbai Rockets: Men’s Singles: Sameer Verma (42), Andres Antonsen (55), Pratul Joshi (1), Women’s Singles: Shriyanshi Pardeshi (1), Anura Prabhudesai (1), Men’s Doubles: Manu Attri 918), Lee Yong Dae (80), Kim Gi Jung (45), Mixed Doubles: Pia Zebadiah (15), Kuhoo Garg (2)

North Eastern Warriors: MS: Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk (20), Tian Houwei (32), AS Siril Verma (3), WS: Saina Nehwal (80), Rituparna Das (6), MD: Yoo Yeon Seong (49), Liao Min Chun (20), Dhruv Kapila (1), XD: Kim Ha Na (40), Kukkapalli Maneesha (1).

Pune 7 Aces: MS: Brice Leverdoez (20), Lakshya Sen (11), Sony Dwi Kuncoro (10), Ajay Jayaram (10), WS: Carolina Marin (80), Line Kjaersfeldt (31), MD: Vladimir Ivonov (17), Mathias Boe (50), Chirag Shetty (14), XD: Prajakta Sawant (3)

Chennai Smashers: MS: P Kashyap (5), Chong Wei Feng (14), Rajiv Ouseph (24), WS: Sung Ji Hyun (80), Saili Rane (1), MD: Or Chin Chung (15), Chris Adcock (54), B Sumeeth Reddy (10), XD: Gabrielle Adcock (36), Rutaparna Panda (2).

Ahmedabad Smash Masters: MS: Sourabh Verma (16), Viktor Axelsen (80), Daren Liew (33), WS: Kirsty Gilmour (26), Vaishnavi Bhale (1), MD: Lee Chun Hei Reginald (18), Satwiksairaj Rankireddy (52), K Nandagopal (1), XD: Sikki Reddy (29), Anoushka Parikh (3)

Awadhe Warriors: MS: Guru Sai Dutt (7), Son Wan Ho (70), Lee Dong Keun (36), WS: Rasika Raje (2), Beiwen Zhang (39), MD: Lee Yang (31), MR Arjun (5), Mathias Christiansen (37), XD: Ashwini Ponnappa (32), Sanyogita Ghorpade (1)

Bengaluru Raptors: MS: K Srikanth (80), B Sai Praneeth (32), Mithun Manjunath (2), Nygun Tein Minh (6), WS: Vu Thi Trang (9), MD: Hendra Setiawan (42), Marcus Ellis (20), Mohammad Ahsan (42), XD: Lauren Smith (20), Sanjana Santosh (2).

Delhi Dashers: MS: HS Prannoy (80), Chirag Sen (1), tommy Sugiarto (70), WS: Evgeniya Kosetskaya (5), MD: Chai Biao (42), Maneepong Jongjit (23), Wang Sijie (15), Vighnesh Devlekar (1), XD: Lee Chia Hsin (20), V Harika (1)

PBL FACT-FILE:
Teams: 9
Cities: Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Lucknow, Hyderabad, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Guwahati and Pune.
Venues: Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Bengaluru.
Dates: December 22, 2018-January 13, 2019.
Total Players in Auction: 145
Total Players sold: 90
Highest Foreign Non-Icon Player sold: Tommy Sugiarto.
Highest Indian Player Non-Icon sold: Satwiksairaj Rankireddy.
Format: Best of 3 Games with 15 point a set.
Total No of Ties: 30 number of matches in each Tie: 5 
Prize money: 6 cr; Winner: 3cr, Runner up: 1.5cr, 3rd and 4th Place finish: 75 lakh each.

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