The teams had a total purse of Rs 30 lakh to complete their squads (minimum 15 and maximum 18) and so strategy was always going to be the key. After the likes of K Gowtham, Mayank Agarwal, R Samarth, Shreyas Gopal were all initially ignored, keeping their probable inclusion in the India A and/or Duleep Trophy sides in mind, stars such as Robin Uthappa (Rs 7.90 lakh to Bengaluru Blasters) and Amit Verma (Rs 7.60 lakh to Mysore Warriors) were earnestly fought for before the attention veered to the Pool B players.
The franchises went hard for both experience and youth as could be seen by the high bids for KB Pawan (Rs 4.55 lakh to Bengaluru Balsters), Arjun Hoysala (Rs 3.10 lakh to Mysore Warriors), Suneel Raju (Rs 3.50 lakh to Bijapur Bulls), KP Appanna (RS Rs 3.85 lakh to Bijapur Bulls) and Abrar Kazi (Rs 3.50 lakh to Ballari Tuskers) as also Shubang Hegde (Rs 3.05 lakh to Belagavi Panthers), Swapnil Yelave (Rs 3.50 lakh to Ballari Tuskers) and Melu Kranthi Kumar (Rs 3.50 lakh to Hubli Tigers) but it was Jonathan R and Nidish who broke the Rs 5 lakh barrier for Pool B barriers. While middle-order batsman Nidish topped with a bid of Rs 5.85 lakh, Belagavi Panthers bagging him after a tough stand-off with Shivamogga Lions, Ballari Tuskers and Hubli Tigers, the hard-hitting Jonathan had to settle for slightly less, going to Shivamogga Lions for Rs 5.45 lakh. Bengaluru Blasters and Ballari Tuskers ran Shivamogga close.