Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) 2019 auctions saw a memorable day yesterday with former U Mumba star – Siddharth Desai being auctioned for whopping Rs 1.45 crores by Vizag based team Telugu Titans.
It was an ecstatic day for star raider who was also the last year’s ‘Debutant of the year’. The way the 27-year-old rose to fame last season, he was bound to be a hot and in-demand property.
With this huge bid, Desai became the highest earner this term and also, the second most expensive player of PKL for a whopping Rs 1.45 crore after Rs 1.51 crore bid for Monu Goyat last year.
In an interview with Indian Express, ecstatic Desai said, “I am in Mumbai and was watching it on TV. I thought I will get around Rs 70 to Rs 80 lakhs considering my last year’s performance but I was shocked to see that the bidding for me started with a crore. I started dancing with my friends.”
He further added, “I am from a poor household. My father is a farmer and I am aware of the effort it takes to become a kabaddi sportsperson. I will help the young and local players with the money I’ve earned.”
Desai was an unknown last year, making his debut in a league that has seen players shoot to fame while still in their teens. This unpredictable raider who had the unique ability to raid from either side of the court, Desai was an instant hit last season and it wasn’t much of a surprise that he would be a prime target this term.
Desai was always expected to invite high bids after he had made a glorious start to his career with 218 raid points last year and about this, Jaipur Pink Panther’s owner Abhishek Bachchan said in the pre-auction press conference, “Any team would be foolish to not go for Siddharth Desai. He is fit, the league has provided us medical reports. He had insane stats last season, he’s a monster on the mat and off the mat, he is a lovely person.”
Apart from Desai, another player to join the crorepati club was Nitin Tomar who was retained by Puneri Paltan for Rs 1.20 crores.