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Revealed: The World's Highest Paid Cricketers

Since the introduction of the Twenty20 format, cricket has gone through a revolution that has attracted new fans and helped line the pockets of the sport's biggest stars.

The Indian Premier League, in particular, is among the most lucrative sports leagues in the world, with a brand value of $US4.16 billion according to Duff & Phelps.

The stars of the show, the players, have profited handsomely since the introduction of the league in 2008.

The IPL earnings are added to international contracts and sponsorship endorsements for many of the world's top cricketers.

Here's cricket's rich list for 2017.

10. Steve Smith ($AU3.4 million)

Steve Smith

According to Total Sportek, Smith earns two million dollars each year as the captain of the Australian national cricket team (across all formats) and the Supergiants in the IPL. He receives a $250,000 captain bonus and over $500,000 of endorsements each year.

9. Gautam Ghambir ($AU3.4 million)

Gautam Ghambir

With his IPL contract at 'just' $1.5 million, Ghambir earns a whopping $1 million extra in endorsements. He plays domestic cricket for Delhi and is captain of the Kolkata Knight Riders.

8. Yuvraj Singh ($AU5.1 million)

Yuvraj Singh

Currently playing for the Sunrisers Hyderabad on a $1.8 million contract, endorsements play a large role in Singh’s full salary. He has contracts with brands such as Puma, Sports365, Microsoft Xbox 360 and many more. He is a member of the Indian cricket team and the most expensive player to be sold in the IPL.

7. Virender Sehwag ($AU5.1 million)

Virender Sehwag

Former Indian cricketer and captain, Sehwag has a $1.8 million IPL contract with $2 million in endorsements with brands such as Royal Challenge, J.K Cement and Hero Honda.

6. Mitchell Starc ($AU5.4 million)

Mitchell Starc

Currently spearheading Australia's pace attack and former player for the Royal Challengers in the IPL, Starc earns a total of $3.5 million in playing contracts and an added $500,000 in endorsement deals. He earns an impressive $14,000 per test.

5. David Warner ($AU7.4 million)

David Warner

Warner is the current vice-captain of the Australian cricket team and plays for the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL. His Aussie and other T20 contracts earn him $3.5 million a year. Warner also gets an additional $2.5 million worth of endorsements, signing deals with companies such as Asics, LG, Optus, KFC, VB, the Nine Network and more!

4. AB De Villiers ($AU8.7 million)

AB De Villiers

AB De Villiers captains South Africa's One-Day International team and is regarded as one of the best batsman in the world by many. He also plays for the Royal Challengers Bangalore (IPL) and the Titans and Northerns which are part of the South African domestic league. He earns $4.5 million from all his contracts and an added $2 million in endorsements, having deals with companies like Audi, Puma and Kookaburra sports.

3. Chris Gayle ($AU10 million)

Chris Gayle

Jamaican cricketer and former captain Chris Gayle knows how to get the big bucks. He is currently playing domestic cricket for Jamaica as well as representing the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL, the Karachi Kings in the Pakistan Super League and the Dhaka Gladiators in the Bangladesh Premier League. All his contracts help him earn $4.5 million, with an extra $3 million in endorsements.

2. MS Dhoni ($AU26.5 million)

MS Dhoni

Former captain of the Indian team, MS Dhoni comes in second place earning nearly $20 million a year. He is currently the captain of the IPL's Chennai Super Kings (which he also owns) and plays for the national team – these contracts earn him $5.7 million a year. But what really pushes him up the list is his whopping $14 million in endorsement deals. Dhoni was named one of the most marketable athletes in the world by Forbes and has been sponsored by Reebok, Pepsi, Sony, Boost, GE Money and many more. He currently has 20 endorsement deals up his sleeve.

1. Virat Kohli ($AU36.2 million)

Virat Kohli

Current captain of the Indian national team and the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL, Kohli comes in top spot earning $26.9 million a year – which makes him the highest paid cricketer in the world! $6.9 million comes from his IPL and MCCI Central contracts and the rest ($20 million!) all comes from endorsements. He signed the biggest contract by any cricket player in the world with Puma, becoming their global ambassador, as well as having deals with Pepsi, Adidas, Mattel, Nestle, Herbalife, Oakley and the list goes on.

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