It is no more an Indian regional sport played on sand fields. Vivo Pro Kabaddi League, heading into its Seventh season, has transformed this Indian rural passion into the sport of professional icons with crores being showered on the players in the just concluded PKL season 7 auctions.
The twelve Vivo Pro Kabaddi franchisees have committed over ₹ 50 crore to acquire 200 players – 173 domestic and 27 foreigners – during the two-day auction process, which concluded in Mumbai yesterday (Tuesday).
Star Sports and Mashal Sports have changed the scenario for Indian kabaddi over the course of a mere five years and six seasons. As the Pro Kabaddi League Season 7 gets underway from 19th July 2019 at its usual time in the calendar, 4 players are assured of ₹ 1 crore plus salary.
Last season’s best debutant Siddharth Desai (Cat A) will end up richer by ₹1.45 crore. That has been the highest bid for at the Pro Kabaddi League players auction in Mumbai on April 08-09 this year. Nitin Tomar is the second highest paid player of PKL Season 7.
Haryana Steelers ₹ 77.83 lakh commitment is the 10th highest player acquisition deal for the season.
InsideSport.co brings to its readers the compilation of PKL’s top 10 earners of this season.
1 Siddharth Desai
If someone has created the biggest surprise this year in the PKL auctions – then it is this man, Siddharth Desai. Leaving every established star behind Desai is the highest salary earner of the PKL Season 7. Telugu Titans grabbed Desai through a fierce bidding war at a staggering 1.45 Crores pay packet. More than 79% salary increase from his last year pay package of36.40 lakh. 1.45 Crore salary package makes Desai the highest earning player of the PKL Season 7.
2 Nitin Tomar
Nitin Tomar the highest earner of PKL season 5, dropped down to number 4 in the highest earning players list of PKL season 6. But stock of Nitin has moved up 2 places to number 2 in PKL Season 7 highest earners list. Tomar this season is retained by Puneri Paltan Puneri Paltan for 1.2 crore salary package.
3 Deepak Niwas Hooda
Deepak Hooda’s all-round skills attracted Jaipur Pink Panthers again as he is retained by the Panthers for 1.15 CR to occupy the third position in the PKL’S highest earner list for the season 7 and with retention Hooda is the happy man at No.3.
4 Fazel Atrachali
Fazel Atrachali the gritty defender from Iran stays put as the highest earning foreigner for the season 7. Iranian has also moved to number 4th in the PKL highest earners list for the season from number 6th last season. Fazel will continue to ply his trade for U Mumba as he has been retained by the Mumbai team. He has created history in the last PKL auction as he became the first foreigner player in the league’s history to command 1 CR salary cheque. Fazel has managed to get the tag of highest-paid foreign player in the league this time as well.
5 Rahul Chaudhari
Surprise, Surprise. Rahul Chaudhari the maverick star who had occupied the 2nd spot in the last year’s highest earners list has moved down to 5th in the PKL season’s 7 highest salary list. Last year surprising everyone he had managed jaw-dropping 1.29 crores annual salary package but this year Rahul was bought by the Tamil Thalaivas for 94 lakh.
6 Monu Goyat
Last year’s Poster Boy who surprised everyone with his salary package of 1.51 Crore – Monu Goyat’s is the biggest loser in the auction this year. Goyat this time could only muster bid of 93 lakhs from UP Yodhas. He not only moved out of crorepati bracket but also has fallen to number 6 in the PKL highest salary list for Season 7.
7 Rohit Kumar
Rohit Kumar of Bengaluru Bulls occupies number 7th position with 89 lac salary in the highest earner list of PKL 2019. Like Fazel and Deepak, Rohit also has been retained by his old franchise for the amount.
8 Sandeep Narval
Sandeep Narwal has been placed 8th in the highest earner list of PKL 2019 as U Mumba consolidates their 18 men squad by trading Sandeep for 89 lakh this season.
9 Mahender Singh
Defender Mahender Singh occupies number 9 position in highest earner list of PKL Season 7. Singh has been grabbed by Bengaluru Bulls for 80 lakh in the auctions.
10 Vikash Khandola
At no. 10 is Vikash Khandola. Vikash of Haryana Steeler occupies number 7th position with 77.83 lac salary in the highest earner list of PKL 2019. Vikash has been retained by his old franchise with lion increment of 30.83 lacs.