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Mendis, Hodge sign longer contracts

Calcutta: Kolkata Knight Riders signed two of their replacement players from the last season — Sri Lankan spin sensation Ajantha Mendis and seasoned Australian batsman Brad Hodge — on longer contracts.

Mendis has arguably been the best bowler in the world in recent months and is sure to be a big attraction when the second season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) kicks off April 10.

Delhi DareDevils have bought Australian batting sensation David Warner and allrounder Andrew MacDonald while Deccan Chargers have roped in Ryan Harris, also of Australia, for the second edition of the IPL.

The closure of the month-long trading window on Thursday saw a total of seven players being traded, according to a media release.

The Mumbai Indians signed the West Indian Dwayne Bravo, while the Chennai Super Kings inked a long-term contract with Sri Lankan Chamara Kapugedera, the release added.

Royal Challengers Bangalore swapped Zaheer Khan for Karnataka Ranji Trophy captain Robin Uthappa (Mumbai Indians). In another exchange, Ashish Nehra of the Mumbai Indians was swapped for left-handed batsman Shikhar Dhawan of the Delhi DareDevils.

Jaydev Shah of the Rajasthan Royals — captain of the Saurashtra Ranji team — will play for the Mumbai Indians.

Batsman Gaurav Dhiman of the Mumbai Indians will turn out for Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan pacer Pankaj Singh, of the Rajasthan Royals, will don the colours of the team from Bangalore in the coming IPL season.

Australian MacDonald featured in his country’s consolation Test win in Sydney, whilst Warner made a sensational Twenty20 debut — both against South Africa.

Amrit Mathur, chief operating officer of the Delhi DareDevils, was excited about his new addition.

“We are really delighted to have signed David. “His debut game for Australia the other day has been sensational and we are hoping he will carry forward this brilliance into season two of the IPL,” he said.

The IPL player auction for the second season will take place in Goa on February 6, where franchises will have the opportunity to purchase current international players to fill the remaining slots for overseas players in their squads.

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