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Posts Tagged ‘Indian General Elections’

Day four brought just a little bit of relief to me only as a KKR fan…..with the win it seemed like I wasn’t a sucker,supporting some team without a direction! However, seeing them win without Duckworth Lewis method being brought in would have been greater joy….the real game is about playing it and as a fan its the adrenalin that players bring in us mere mortals which gives value for our money and love for the sport…

IPL Cheersleaders on the Bench

IPL Cheersleaders on the Bench

Taking on from my last blog, Day 2 was much interrupted with rains and D/L was name of the game then. I raised concern about Lalit Modi’s gamble on SA and as I was wiping off the fears of more bad weather as the pessimist in me…it strikes again.

London shines in good April weather while SA reels under bursts of heavy rain….its sod’s law as we are often prone to.

india-election

The learning probably is that India needs to mature as a nation that can withstand the pressure of its General Elections and support national events that make its people upbeat, generate economic activity and keep the one of the best developments in the national sport within her boundaries.

When will they ever learn? The bloody politicians!

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It is Season II for IPL and the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) has just announced that the tournament will be played off shore this year – that is a BIG change of plan. With India in the throes of a General election in April/ May, the Government has been unable to commit security to the 59 matches originally scheduled at venues all over India! Power of politics eh….!

But is this the real opportunity?

Kolkata Knight Riders

Kolkata Knight Riders

With ambitions to be the NFL of the cricket world, the first season of the Indian Premier League was played with much fanfare, glamour and glitz last year. Eight teams rocked millions in Indian cities with some high octane performances. In January 2008, the television rights to the competition were sold by the Board of Control for Cricket in India, the organising body, for $1 billion (£500 million), to confirm India as cricket’s financial superpower. The auction of eight newly created city sides raised another $720 million. Bollywood took centre stage with the Indian corporate world in tow – cheerleaders from the Washington Redskins shook their booty to the tune of Bhangra and the Indian middle class plunged into 45 days of cricketing frenzy!

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Some of the biggest names of Indian Industry joined hands with Bollywood superstars (Shahrukh Khan, Shilpa Shetty, Preity Zinta) and even Lachlan Murdoch to lap up the eight teams – and we had the Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders, Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Daredevils, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chennai Super Kings, Hyderabad Deccan Chargers and Kings XI Punjab taking guard for glory. The biggest names in world cricket couldn’t resist the glamour and power of one of the richest cricketing body of the world – Sachin Tendulkar, Saurav Ganguly, Ricky Ponting, Virendra Shehwag, Sanath Jayasuria, Daniel Vettori, Shane Warne – provided a fantastic fusion of performance on the pitch and millions of words for the tabloid columns every morning.

Rajasthan Royals - 2008 Champions

Rajasthan Royals - 2008 Champions

Cricket had not seen such glamorous days since Kerry Packer transformed it by taking on the game’s establishment with his World Series in 1977 and luring top players with huge salaries.

The probable venues for this year are now South Africa or England. To some it may seem a futile attempt to keep the tournament going – with questions about the feasibility, the financial viability, the returns, interest levels, ticket sales etc. But this is the chance (by default) for IPL to actually go international. Taking the glamour and excitement to foreign shores and making it a success will probably help breaking the barriers and also help cricket cross the threshold into mass global appeal. This is not copy-book test cricket – this is all about adrenalin, glamour, pace, footwork and only four hours of throbbing appeal! A chance to modify the formula for global appeal!

Shilpa shetty - Co-owner of Rajasthan Royals

Shilpa shetty - Co-owner of Rajasthan Royals

With a move to South Africa , this could be a real test for its 2010 FIFA World Cup preparations.

OR

If England gets to host, it could be a win-win for all. With the current economic mood and no exciting events till the Olympics, this could be a whiff of fresh air, even a distraction for the media from its ever so boring, monotonous attempts to glorify the ‘Credit Crunch’ with soul dampening commentaries on the City and our rudderless politicians! And with doses of Bollywood thrown in, it could just be a start to a gorgeous summer of ’09!

All in the name of the GAME!

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