Guptill, Simmons biggest picks in CPL 2018 draft
New Zealand opener Martin Guptill and Windies opener Lendl Simmons were the biggest picks, with Barbados Tridents and St Lucia Stars going for them in the first round of the Caribbean Premier League 2018 drafts on Thursday (March 1). The likes of Sohail Tanvir (Guyana Amazon Warriors), Andre Russell (Jamaica Tallawahs), Chris Gayle (St Kitts and Nevis Patriots) and Dwayne Bravo (Trinbago Knight Riders) were retained by their respective sides for the first round of draft pick.
While the retained players have bagged a contract of USD 160,000, Guptill was snapped for USD 90,000 by St Lucia Stars who finished last in the previous season, and Simmons was picked for USD 70,000. With each of the six teams expected to have 18-member squads, 47 were picked from the drafts while 61 were already retained.
In a season which witnessed the highest number of transfers, Kieron Pollard was the biggest earner. After having led the Jamaica Tallawahs for four seasons, he asked the franchise to release him. St Lucia Stars picked him for USD 130,000.
Among the marquee players, Shahid Afridi (Jamaica Tallawahs), Shoaib Malik (Guyana Amazon Warriors), Evin Lewis (St Kitts and Nevis Patriots) and Chris Lynn (Trinbago Knight Riders) directly negotiated with the respective franchises and did not enter the draft process.
Legspinner Sandeep Lamichhane, who was picked in the IPL auction earlier this year, became the first Nepal player to be picked in a CPL draft, after the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots signed him for USD 5,000. The teenage legspinner hadn’t set a base price before entering the auction.
The English trio of Alex Hales, Adil Rashid and Tymal Mills failed to bag a contract for the upcoming season as they went unpicked. One of the primary reasons for England players to not find interest in the CPL was because of the NatWest T20 Blast scheduled to overlap with the CPL.