IPL chance thrills Mills

Excited Black Cap says it's not all about the money

Last updated 10:12 12/03/2008

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New Zealand cricketer Kyle Mills says playing in the lucrative Twenty20 cricket Indian Premier League (IPL) will be an exciting experience.

Pace bowler Mills and his Black Caps team-mate Ross Taylor were snapped up at the second round of IPL player auctions overnight.

The northern Mohali team paid $US150,000 ($NZ192,431) for Mills while the southern Bangalore team grabbed batsman Taylor for $US100,000.

Peter Fulton, Jamie How, Jeetan Patel, Chris Martin and James Franklin were also in the auction , but did not secure contracts.

Mills, who set up New Zealand's first test win over England in Hamilton on Sunday, said he had been playing hard in the last couple of weeks to try to "get my profile out there into the market".

"When I signed the (IPL) contract a couple of weeks ago, my reserve was down around the $US150,000 mark. . . I'm happy with the $US150,000."

But it was not all about the money. He was looking forward to playing alongside the likes of Australian bowler Brett Lee and Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara.

"It's going to be interesting for me to see how Brett Lee would bowl to (Australian captain) Ricky Ponting or how Sangakkara would face (Sri Lanka spinner) Muttiah Muralitharan, so it would be an exciting time," Mills told Radio Sport.

"I think guys involved in this competition will further enhance their abilities by playing alongside such great players."

Mills said there had been good-natured banter among the New Zealand team over the IPL auction and he was sure there is no issue between those with contracts and those without.

Another benefit derived from the formation of the IPL was that it would "show the youngsters out there an alternative to the rugby path, that you can earn good money in cricket and the best athletes in New Zealand are playing cricket".

Mills and Taylor join skipper Daniel Vettori, wicketkeeper Brendon McCullum and allrounder Jacob Oram in the IPL, along with retiring former captain Stephen Fleming and one-day specialist Scott Styris.

He felt there would be no problem for the IPL players to join the New Zealand team late for the upcoming tour of England.

"We are on the road 11 months of the year, chopping from Twenty20 to test to one-day cricket and we have had to adapt quickly."

Just when the Kiwi IPL players would link up with the main touring party would "come out in the wash in the next week or so".

Foremost in the mind of the Black Caps was trying to "put the Poms on their arses again", Mills said.

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