Teams broke the bank to secure the services of these stars.
The auction for the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) season 8 was as exciting as any of the previous seasons. Many things changed in this year’s auction, which was designed to be because Kabaddi fans will finally be able to watch their favorite sport live after a two-year hiatus. The league will resume in December 2021, after being postponed in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Indian players like Pardeep Narwal and Deepak Hooda fetched the biggest bids. However, a few foreigners also attracted bidding wars among the franchises.
Here are the five most expensive foreign players in Pro Kabaddi League season 8 auction.
5. Mohammad Esmaeil Nabibakhsh – Rs 13.2 Lakhs (Haryana Steelers)
Mohammad Esmaeil Nabibakhsh is an Iranian professional Kabaddi player who presently plays as an all-rounder. He is well-known for his raiding and defending abilities. After being purchased by Bengal Warriors, he began his Pro Kabaddi League journey in 2019. He was that season’s most expensive foreign purchase.
Nabibakhsh made his debut against UP Yoddha, in which he got a super 10. He continued to contribute points in raids and defence, proving to be a key asset for his side. He is one of the few players in the PKL to have a super 10 and a high five in the same game.
In the semi-final and final, he took over as captain and led by example as the Bengal Warriors became victorious for the first time. Haryana Steelers signed Mohammad Esmaeil Nabibakhsh for ₹13.2 Lakh during the Pro Kabaddi League season 8 auction.
4. Hadi Oshtorak – Rs 20 Lakhs (Gujarat Giants)
With over 50 points, the Iranian is considered as one of the best all-rounders in the Pro Kabaddi League. In season 2 of the league, he made his PKL debut for the Telugu Titans. He crossed 100 overall tackle points in season 7.
Hadi Oshtorak, an all-rounder, is a veteran of the Pro Kabaddi League circuit. In seasons 3 and 4, he was a member of the champions Patna Pirates. He is unquestionably among the Pro Kabaddi League’s top five all-rounders.
3. Jang Kun Lee – Rs 20.5 Lakhs (Patna Pirates)
Jang Kun Lee is a professional Kabaddi player from South Korea who currently represents Patna Pirates at the PKL. He is the first overseas player to score 400 raid points in the Pro Kabaddi League. He became the most valuable international player in season 5. In the seventh season of the league, he joined the Patna Pirates and they bought him back for season 8 for a whopping ₹20.5 lakhs.
2. Abozar Mohajer Mighani – Rs 30.5 Lakhs (Bengal Warriors)
Abozar Mohajer Mighani, a tenacious Iranian defender, is famous for his aggressive tackles and ankle holds. With his supreme defence abilities, the defender never fails to wow the crowd. With his scary and violent approach to the game, he creates a headache for opposition raiders.
The back hold, in which Abozar grips the raider’s torso from behind and immobilizes him, is his defining technique. He made his Pro Kabaddi League debut in the fifth season, playing for Gujarat Fortune Giants. He had a fantastic season with 65 tackle points in 24 games. The Gujarat-based franchise reached the final for the fifth season.
During the PKL 2021 auction, the Bengal Warriors paid ₹30.5 lakh for Abozar Mohajer Mighani, making him the second most-expensive foreign player in the league.
1. Mohammadreza Shadloui Chiyaneh – Rs 31 Lakhs (Patna Pirates)
The Iranian all-rounder is a formidable opponent. He primarily plays in the left corner and famous for his body blocks, waist holds, and dives — all of which completely overturn opposing raiders. At the 2019 Junior Kabaddi World Championships, Shadloui was also an important piece in Iran’s gold-winning defence. Mohammadreza Shadloui Chiyaneh was sold to Patna Pirates for ₹31 lakh, making him the most-expensive foreign player in the PKL season 8.
For the forthcoming eighth season, the Patna Pirates are eager to try out a new defence. It will be an ideal chance for the Iranian prodigy to build a name for himself.