New Delhi: Some big star names who had a successful Big Bash League will be up at the auctions on February 6 for the Indian Premier League.
A total of 351 cricketers -- of which 230 are Indians and 131 foreigners -- will go under the hammer in Saturday's auction in Bengaluru for the ninth edition of the cash-rich T20 tourney.
With Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings being suspended for two years, only 10 players were drafted in the December 15 auctions from each side respectively.
Rising Pune Super Giants and Gujarat Lions will have to do the lions share of buyings on Saturday after having five players each in the squad right now.
Shane Watson, Kevin Pietersen, Michael Hussey and Usman Khawaja had a fantastic BBL season this year and all eyes will be on which teams will snatch these players.
We look at these four players who will look to make serious impact in the IPL 9 season.
Shane Watson: Watson made a return to the Australia Twenty20 squad after a fantastic outing for Sydney Thunder in the BBL. He starred with both bat and ball for his franchise and carried on the form for Australia too. A 124* against India in the final T20 alongside a wicket showed why Watson is a valuable entity for any team.
Watson who played for the now suspended Royals, had played in seven IPL seasons and scored 2372 runs with a decent average of 36.49. His bowling too has been good with 61 wickets in 78 matches to show his prowess in both sections. Watson knows the conditions well and it will be a big plus for any side who takes him.
Kevin Pietersen: England outcast Pietersen helped his side Melbourne Stars to the final of the BBL and played two mammoth innings in both the semis and finals to show why he should be considered as a big player still. The 35-year old had pulled out of his IPL deal last season and is back this season. With a base price of Rs 2,00,00,000 KP will look to selected by a franchise as he will surely offer the batting prowess one will hope for.
Michael Hussey: The Sydney Thunder skipper has continued to be a true ambassador of the sport and finds himself in the auctions after CSK was suspended. The 40-year-old former Aussie player showed he still has the touch to play for a top side after being consistent in the BBL. With the performances under his belt, and the experience in the IPL earlier, Hussey should be a serious contender in the auctions.
Usman Khawaja: The Aussie sensation has been in supreme authority of his game in the Test series followed by the BBL where his vitality won Thunders the title. Khawaja has become an important memeber of the Australia Test squad and is also fighting for a place in the limited overs game. Khawaja looks one of the players to make the cut for the ICC World T20 in March and given his heroics any IPL side will benefit him batting up the order and make use of his form.