Pune, 21st May 2016 – Grand Master Krishnan Sasikiran as expected turned out to be the costliest player in the auction for Maharashtra Chess League. Ahmednagar Checkers bought the talented GM for one lakh seventy thousand rupees. Among women players Padimni Rout and local star EeshaKaravade got more money than more illustrious GM Koneru Humpy.
The pioneering league, entering fourth year on the trot, will be held between 11 to 15 June at PYC Hindu Gymkhana. The countdown began with the auction held at Amanora Township Club House. The owners of different franchises were all prepared for the auction as they had experience of previous three years. Ultimately the auction evolved like a chess game with intriguing moves and novelty. This year MCL is being supported by IIFL Wealth, Persistent Software, Amanora Park Town and de Aasara Foundation.
Sasikiran, who is participating for the first time, was the major attraction of the auction. His Elo Rating in standard, rapid and blitz category is 2642, 2660, 2681 respectively. Considering reputation and achievement, his name attracted many bidders. With 75 thousand rupees as base price Thane and Nagar were among the front runners. But ultimately Nagar jumped and grabbed him at the price which turned out to be the record sum.
Humpy who made her debut last year, decided to experience the thrill again this year. Jalgaon Battlers bought her for one lakh 38 thousand rupees. After Humpy was sold, no other women player was expected to cross this sum. Contrary to this Padmini got one lakh 61 thousand, while Eesha grabbed one lakh 58 thousand. Both are International Masters. Thane bought Padmini, while Pune Truemasters took Eesha in their team. Since teams are required to play three players from Maharashtra Eesha’s value increased. Also her performance in previous leagues was instrumental. Nagar bought Tania Sachdev for base price of fifty thousand.
GM from Pune AbhijeetKunte was bought by Pune-Sangli Navigators for one lakh from base price of sixty thousand. This team is a new entrant and they aquired GM B. Adhiban for one lakh fifty thousand.
Mumbai Movers bought GM Abhijeet Gupta (1 lakh 40 thousand) and R. Vaishali (one lakh 3 thousand). Vaishali, who had a base price of only ten thousand, was the sensational highlight of auction after her value crossed one lakh mark. Last year there were no takers for her.
Newest GMs of Maharashtra ShardulGagare and Swapnil Dhopade also earned satisfactory amount. Shardul was retained by Nagar for 72 thousand, while Jalgaon paid one lakh 25 thousand for Swapnil.
Anirudha Deshpande told that, in spite of recession and drought we are able to host this league. The confidence shown by owners of six franchise and sponsors being vital on this front. We are very proud to extend this pioneering concept.
Kunte mentioned the increased importance and money got by women players.