New Delhi, July 18 (): The $1 million Indian Badminton League (IBL) players’ auction, which was initially scheduled to happen on July 19, has been postponed. The auction will now be held on July 22.
The postponement was made on the request of the six franchises. Media reports say that the franchises needed time to prepare for the auction by setting up a workshop.
A statement from the organisers on Thursday said that as a few of the franchisees had requested for a two-day workshop ahead of the IBL auction, the IBL governing council had accepted their request. Hence, the IBL franchisee meet would take place in New Delhi on July 21, followed by the IBL players auction on July 22.
The auction is witnessing repeated postponements; it was originally scheduled to be held in March. Later, it was postponed to June 30 and then further delayed to July 19.
But, there has been no postponement of the league itself which will be held from August 14-31. The opening ceremony is scheduled to be held in New Delhi on August 13 while the finals will be held in Mumbai on August 31. The six franchises are Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Lucknow and Pune.
The franchises for the respective regions are named as Hyderabad HotShots, Karnataka Kings (Bangalore), Lucknow Warriors, Mumbai Masters, Pune Vijetas and Rajdhani Smashers (Delhi). All the six teams in the inaugural edition, have been bought.
About 150 players will be a part of the auction to occupy the 66 available spots. Indian stars Saina Nehwal, Ashwani Ponappa, Jwala Gutta, Parupalli Kashyap, PV Sandhu and a yet-to-be-named foreign player are the six iconic players with a base price of $50,000.
Each team will have 11 players, with a maximum of four foreigners and one mandatory under-19 player from the local catchment area.
Each franchise will host a two-day leg and the top four franchises will clash in the semi-finals and the winners will meet in the grand final on August 31 in Mumbai.