ANI Photo | “Money spent on Vrinda, Kashvee is monumental”; Saba Karim on WPL Auction

Former Indian cricketer Saba Karim said the huge sums spent by franchises on uncapped batter Vrinda Dinesh and pacer Kashvee Gautam is something monumental and speaks highly about their capabilities.
Australian all-rounder Annabel Sutherland and uncapped Indian pacer Kashvee Gautam attracted the biggest bids of Rs 2 crores each from Delhi Capitals (DC) and Gujarat Giants (GG) respectively while another uncapped India batter Vrinda Dinesh from Karnataka was bought by UP Warriorz for Rs 1.3 crores at the Women’s Premier League (WPL) auction 2024 on Saturday.
JioCinema WPL experts including Saba Karim, Anjum Chopra, Abhinav Mukund and Reema Malhotra spoke on the key players on whom the teams have banked heavily. Anjum was also surprised that Sri Lankan star Chamari Athapaththu went unsold.
Saba said about Indian uncapped players, “India’s uncapped players have done well of late and they are being rewarded for their performances. The talent scouts have noticed that these players can be effective at the top level also. But the amount spent on Kashvee Gautam and Vrinda Dinesh has to be the story of the day. If they go for such amounts of money, it is monumental. It speaks highly of the capabilities of these youngsters.”
“I am wondering where they will slot Vrinda Dinesh in. Yes, it is nice to get a youngster in but they already have Shweta Sehrawat and Parshavi Chopra. When you get someone like Vrinda Dinesh, you want some freshness in the squad and you can get her to open the innings with Alyssa Healy but that also puts pressure on someone like Kiran Navgire. So, I am concerned about Shweta Sehrawat and Vrinda Dinesh – both U-23 players now. It’s a good buy but Rs 1.3 crore is big money,” he added.
Vrinda has been a prolific scorer for Karnataka over the last two domestic seasons, earning praise for her ability to balance consistency with her powerful power-hitting up front. She was instrumental in Karnataka’s run to the final of the Senior Women’s one-day competition earlier this year. With 477 runs in 11 innings at 47.70, she finished third in the league behind Jasia Akter and Priya Punia. This includes 81 versus Rajasthan in the semi-finals, as per ESPNCricinfo.
Kashvee is a right-arm seamer from Chandigarh who was unsold during the last WPL auction. She took a ten-wicket haul, including a hat-trick in an ODI game for Chandigarh against Arunachal Pradesh at the women’s domestic Under-19 competition. She was then called up to the Women’s T20 Challenge, the predecessor of WPL.
During the Senior Women’s T20 Trophy tournament, she took 12 wickets in seven games at an economy of 4.14. In June, she was also part of India’s triumphant Under-23 squad at the ACC Emerging tournament in Hong Kong. Recently, she played two games during the A series, picking up three wickets for India A.
On Delhi spending Rs two crore on Annabel Sutherland, former Indian batter Abhinav Mukund said, “DC was pretty much done with the auction after spending Rs 2 crore on Sutherland. The plans of both Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals were pretty clear. They were focusing on strengthening their teams. Overall, it is a great pick for Delhi Capitals. They are trusting their younger Indian spinners because I immediately feel that Jess Jonassen could make way for Annabel Sutherland.”
Across both white-ball formats for Australia, Sutherland has played 45 matches and scored 439 runs at an average of over 27, with one century and one fifty. She also has taken 32 wickets in both ODIs and T20Is combined.
Saba also said that South African legend Shabnim Ismail is a strong bet for Mumbai Indians and her presence has made the squad even stronger.
“I think that Shabnim Ismail is a strong bet for Mumbai Indians and has made their squad even stronger. Speaking about UP Warriorz buying Vrinda Dinesh, it means that they can now play one overseas seamer in the eleven, which they could not do previously. So, I believe this is a brilliant buy for them,” he added.
Shabnim also had a great day at the auction as she caused a bidding war between MI and Gujarat Giants. She was finally picked by MI for Rs 1.2 crore.
Ismail (34) played 127 ODIs, 113 T20Is and a solitary Test for South Africa in an international career spanning 16 years and retired from international cricket earlier this year. Hailed as the fastest bowler in the women’s game, the South African collected 317 international wickets. Her overall tally in international cricket includes 3 Test wickets, 191 ODI scalps and 123 wickets in T20Is.
Former Indian cricketer Reema Malhotra expressed happiness at spinner Ekta Bisht being picked by Royal Challengers Bangalore for Rs 60 lakh, calling her one of the best Indian spinners with “top-tier athleticism”. Reema also said that the presence of Ekta has left RCB in a better position with more options and variations.
“I am very happy (on Ekta being picked). She deserved to be picked and I believe at the moment, she is one of the best left-arm spinners that India has. She has top-tier athleticism and has a very good game sense as well. RCB wanted to really improve and strengthen their bowling. From the perspective of a leg spinner they have (Georgia) Wareham, for left arm they have Ekta Bisht and as a medium pacer you have Kate Cross. So, I believe this team is in a better position now as they have more options and variations. (ANI)

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