Begaluru: On Monday, Rising Pune Supergiants made it clear that their ambitions are high in the IPL after splashing a record Rs 14.5 crore for England all-rounder Ben Stokes.
Ben Stokes, an impact all-rounder, who has made giant strides in the last two seasons, caused a bidding frenzy before Rising Pune Sunrisers bought him, pouring out all but Rs 3 crore of their total available purse.
It showed RPS are ready to go all out, grabbing Stokes a day after announcing that Mahendra Singh Dhoni will no longer be the skipper and that Australia captain Steve Smith will take charge.
The franchise owners made it clear that performance was the criteria.
The drastic steps come after Rising Pune Supergiants came in a poor seventh in IPL 2016, barely managing to avoid finishing last in the eight-team competition last year.
Rising Pune Supergiants paid the massive sum despite knowing that Ben Stokes, who has come into IPL for the first time, will not be available for the entire season and is likely to return home in the first week of May to play in internationals in the build-up to the ICC Champions Trophy to be staged in England in June.