The Wash Up

The Wash Up: 25

Auction: Part 2

Just when you thought all the Indian Premier League teams were finalized, they hold a second auction. Only a handful of International players were available this round.

Of the 28 players, 14 were Under 19 Indian cricketers. The Under 19 players were chosen by a draft system.

The most expensive player to be chosen this time round was James Hopes ($300,000), possibly off the back of his wonderful performance in the second final of the recent tri-series. [Hopes the biggest draw in low-profile auction]

Pakistan’s Twenty20 star performer Misbah-ul Haq was picked up for $150,000.

One of the biggest surprises of the day was the first and only England player to be playing in the tournament. Dimitri Mascarenhas was picked up by Hampshire. England was believed to not be involved in the IPL, as they have committed to an international tour during the time, not to mention it conflicts with the start of County cricket season. But Mascarenhas received a special exemption from his County side.

Matt Giteau re-signs

Good news for Australian Rugby this week with Matt Giteau signing on till the end of the 2011 World Cup. The Western Force five-eighth is an integral part of the Australian team, and was the highest paid player when he signed for the Western Force in their inaugural year.

However, Matt has inserted a clause in his contract which states that he has the right to negotiate terms with another Australian club for the 2010 and 2011 seasons. His contract with the Western Force expires at the end of 2009. [Brumbies return option for Giteau]

While the Force is disappointed he hasn’t committed for longer, Matt insists that it’s just in there because he had to think for the future and is very happy at the Force.

The clause has brought up speculation that Matt Giteau may return to where he began his Super 14 career- the Brumbies. ACT is where his family also resides.

Brumbies coach Laurie Fisher has expressed interest in signing Matt Giteau if he becomes available, and if Matt continues his fantastic form, the Brumbies will surely attempt to sign him.

Yao Ming is still King

Without Yao Ming, the Rockets are continuing on their winning streak by winning their 20th game tonight. But Yao is not a forgotten man.

Despite missing the rest of the NBA season, Yao’s marketability is still at a high. [Even on sideline, Yao is marketable]

China’s number 1 athlete earns around $25 million from endorsements every year. This includes deals with Reebok, Coke and Visa. Some of these sponsors including Coke, have tied Yao in with their Olympic Campaigns.

The ads featuring Yao and Olympic-related sponsors will remain, as their is still a hope that he will play.

The buzz that is generated around Yao at the moment is at an all-time high. The big question that is debated is will he play in the Olympics or won’t he, and thus Yao is receiving a large amount of coverage from the media. This will be refreshing news to Reebok, who is missing out on their main source of exposure- Houston games.

While the details of his contracts with sponsors are not known, he may suffer in the short term if there are clauses in regards to injury. But in the long run, he is still the No.1 athlete in China, and only 27, so there are many more sponsorship dollars to be made.