Over the past few weeks, I was sucked into the India – Australia Test Match series and no interesting thoughts for blogging splashed across my mind until I read about the IPL and its franchisee business.
I for one agree that the Indian Premier League or IPL will usher in a new era in Cricket entertainment. However the fight amongst two rival leagues (read ICL) is something that the world body like the ICC needs to think about.
For any ardent cricket fan the lure of watching highly competitive 20-20 matches is always an interesting opinion and that too in a franchisee model that ensure big stars play for bigger teams / bigger business houses. We can also expect players like Sachin, Ponting, Symonds paid atrocious sums of money to play for their respective teams
While one appreciates the business concept of the ICL and the IPL, the authoritarian attitude shown by the IPL calls for the company law boards / legal boards to investigate on Monopolistic trade practices.
I do agree the BCCI would like to have the first mover advantage for IPL. But then should they do it at the cost of another business. I beg to differ. It would made a sensational news had the BCCI ensured both the IPL and ICL were offered the same wicket to display their organizational skills.
When Mr. Lalit Modi is happily replicating the model followed by the Football Association, he should also learn to have tournaments that can co exist. Though the Premier League has broken all telecast records, they also have other tournaments like the FA Cup (The oldest league competition in the world), the Carling Cup and the Community Shield
In addition to the packed domestic and international calendars, had the BCCI urged the ICC to ask its members to clear players for a period annually, then it would have ushered in a new league that would have been different and also entertaining. I had the opportunity to watch the ICL and I have to say inspite of the difficulties faced, they did provide a good telecast and had a good crowd also coming in.
Threatening players, boards and other agencies will only lead to more confusion. The BCCI should shed its alter EGO and invite ICL for a discussion on how tournaments can be shared and organized jointly.
We all in our relative area of studies have learnt that the "Product" is always the king. Let us not kill the game by politics.
Mr. Modi / Pawar / are you listening?