Pandya, whose stock has risen rapidly in international cricket in recent times and is seen as a quintessential limited-overs impact player, was signed by the Mumbai franchisee for a measly Rs 10 lakh two seasons ago.
Following his India debut, MI hiked Pandya’s fees to Rs 20 lakh for the 2016 season but ironically his elder brother Krunal Pandya was bought by MI for Rs 2 crore. It is obvious the younger Pandya would like to set the record straight.
With the BCCI on the verge of meeting IPL team owners to flesh out the retention policy for players, top sources told ToI that Pandya has informed the board about his desire to be up for auction. “Hardik wants to be at the auction and the rule says that if he isn’t ready to play for Mumbai Indians, he can certainly be at the auction,” a top board official said on Friday.
Depending on the retention policy which will be framed by the IPL governing council, Mumbai Indians may still opt for Pandya as their second player after Rohit Sharma. The defending champions could also compensate Hardik if such an eventuality comes to pass.But other teams appear equally ready to spend big money on Pandya.
There are suggestions that India captain Virat Kohli‘s IPL team -Royal Challengers Bangalore -is keen on having Pandya.
“Pandya could be the next big thing in the IPL if he is at the auction. After all, the teams will retain big India players like Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni and Rohit Sharma,” sources said.
Source : timesofindia