Chris Morris, who was bought for a whopping 16.25 crores in the IPL auction, was not affected by the heavy price tag, unlike Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh. Meanwhile, former Indian cricketers Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh had differing opinions on this matter.
In the history of the Indian Premier League auctions, Chris Morris, a former South African all-rounder, was the first cricketer to earn more than 16 crores. He was not affected by the pressure of the high price tag. In contrast, Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh, former Indian batsmen, supported contrasting views on this topic.
In IPL auctions, where players earn more than 16 crores, Gambhir and Yuvraj had always admitted that they felt pressure to justify their hefty annual IPL salaries. On the other hand, uncapped player Rahul Tewatia supported Morris’s perspective a year later, as he never worried about his IPL season-wise earnings.
Despite mediocre performances in recent tournaments, Morris consistently managed to secure substantial contracts in the IPL. With his ability to dismiss key foreign players and his potential as a batting finisher, he became an attractive asset in the IPL auction.
During the IPL 2020 auction, he was sold to Royal Challengers Bangalore for 10 crores but failed to live up to expectations. Interestingly, Morris got injured after that season and didn’t play any representative matches until the IPL 2021 auction. The franchise still had faith in making him the most expensive player in IPL 2021 auction.
Before the tournament, Morris spoke about the life-changing sum he received after being contracted by Rajasthan Royals. He admitted that the pressure always exists, but it doesn’t affect his on-field performance. It should be noted that in 2015, he was bought for 1.4 crores and his second stint with RCB was accompanied by injury.
“When something like that happens in auctions, a little extra pressure is natural. But the price tag doesn’t impress you at the end of the day on the cricket field,” said ESPNCricinfo quoting Morris.
In the IPL 2021 auction, he was quickly acquired by Mumbai Indians for a base price of 75 lakhs. Royal Challengers joined the bidding war until they backed out at 7.75 crores. When the bid reached 10 crores, it seemed Mumbai would get him, but Royals had different plans.
When the bid climbed to 13.25 crores, Mumbai withdrew. Surprisingly, Punjab Kings entered the process and agreed to spend 13.50 crores on Morris. Both Rajasthan and Punjab were involved when the price reached the astonishing 16.25 crores. Needless to say, this IPL auction was one of the most intense bidding battles in history.
However, Morris couldn’t justify his price tag during the season. He took 15 wickets at an economy rate of 9.17. Despite having a bat in his hand, he had a poor season, managing only 67 runs at a strike rate of 136.73. Unexpectedly, IPL 2021 turned out to be Morris’s last season as well.