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Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The Indian Premier League (IPL) mega auction is back after four years and the ten franchises are all set to firm up their squads by splurging millions of dollars in Bengaluru on February 12-13.

A total of 590 players (370 Indian and 220 foreign) will be up for grabs in the mega auction. This shortlist was pruned from the original list of 1214 players based on the wishlist sent by all the ten franchises.

In a big cheer to cricket enthusiasts in Odisha, as many as two cricketers from the State will feature in the two-day long auction. They are uncapped players Abhishek Raut (all- rounder) and Subhranshu Senapati (batter). While, Abhishek is a right hand batter and bowls leg break googly, Subhranshu is a right hand batter and a part time right arm medium pace bowler.

Earlier, the Odisha Cricket Association (OCA) had recommended as many as five players for the auction. However, the initial list of the registered players was further pruned and only Abhishek and Subhranshu featured in the short list.

The million dollar question is how many Odia players will make it to an IPL team in this edition?

As per OCA sources, both Abhishek and Subhranshu have a good chance to grab the eyeballs of the franchises.

“With two new teams-Ahmedabad and Lucknow in fray in this edition, chances for the Odia players to make it to any team is bright,” said an OCA official.

As per former cricketer Rashmi Ranjan Parida, Subhranshu is the best batsman from Odisha and there is a great chance that the talented right hander will be picked by some of the franchises to be groomed for the future.

“Subhranshu has impressed one all with his skill in recent times. He will definitely be a good choice in the auction,” said Parida.

Abhishek has the experience of playing for Rajasthan Royals in the cash-rich league.

“The utility all-rounder could also be a valuable addition for any franchise,” said Parida.

Earlier in the last edition, Subhranshu had made it to the final list of IPL auction, but remained unsold.

Notably, only two Odia players-- Biplab Samantray and Haladhar Das have played in the IPL as OCA nominees. However, Odia cricketer Pragyan Ojha and Abhishek Rout represented Hyderabad and Maharashtra cricket associations, respectively in the cash-rich league.

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