IPL 2023 Auction: Gautam Gambhir defends LSG's decision to spend INR 16 crore on Nicholas Pooran

LSG signed Nicholas Pooran at IPL 2023 auction

LSG signed Nicholas Pooran at IPL 2023 auction


  • LSG signed Nicholas Pooran at IPL 2023 auction
  • Pooran became the joint-fourth most expensive player in IPL history
  • Even Yuvraj Singh had received INR 16 crore in 2015

Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) mentor Gautam Gambhir has defended Nicholas Pooran's price tag of INR 16 crore at the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 auction.

Former West Indies captain Pooran was released by Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) due to his inconsistent run in IPL 2022. He was even sacked as West Indies' T20I captain after his side failed to make it to the Super 12s of the T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia.

Pooran on Friday became the joint-fourth most expensive player in the history of IPL, along with Yuvraj Singh, who was bought by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) for INR 16 crore ahead of the 2015 edition. Pooran's bid was next only to Sam Curran (INR 18.5 crore to Punjab Kings), Cameron Green (INR 17.5 crore to Mumbai Indians), and Ben Stokes (INR 16.25 crore to Chennai Super Kings).

Speaking during the IPL 2023 auction, Gambhir backed LSG's decision to shell out INR 16 crore for Pooran, saying the big-hitter is an impact player like very few going around in T20 cricket. Gambhir also said that his side did not worry about Pooran's previous record in IPL and that he believed that the explosive batsman will only peak in the coming seasons.

In the 2021 season, Pooran flopped with Punjab Kings (PBKS) as he manged just 85 runs in 12 games. As a result, Punjab released the Windies player ahead of the mega auction in 2021.

"We did not even think about what he did in the last IPL season. It was just his ability. We were clear on the fact that we had to have someone like him, someone of his caliber. He is 26-27 and probably he is going to start peaking from here on. It's not about how many runs you score, it's about the impact, if he can win 3-4 games, he has that ability. How many players have the ability to play in the top 4 and as well at 6-7? Nicholas has that ability," Gambhir said.

"He's a special talent. He'll actually win you games single-handedly," said Gambhir in a video posted by LSG on Twitter.

Gambhir also stated that Pooran can be a back-up wicketkeeping option too. LSG's current first-choice keeper is South Africa's Quinton de Kock, while skipper KL Rahul can also keep wickets.

"And on top of that, he can give us a wicketkeeping option as well. He is again a backup for Quinton de Kock as well," added Gambhir.

LSG came up with some clever buys as they bagged the likes of Jaydev Unadkat, Amit Mishra, Daniel Sams and Romaria Shepherd at their base prices on Friday. Gambhir said he was happy with the picks they were able to make despite having spent INR 16 crore on a player.

"You just have to be lucky. I won't see we were phenomenal. A lot of people might say we spent too much on Pooran but we got Unadkat at his base price, we have got Daniel Sams and Romario Shepherd at the base price, these were our targets," Gambhir said.

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