Another season of Indian Premier League (IPL) has ended with Sunrisers Hyderabad emerging as the champions. It has not been a smooth ride ranging from the lavish spending during the bidding of players, to the tournament arrangement to the celebration parties. Its appropriateness is doubtful when the nation has severe drought, power crisis, unemployment and other problems.
IPL is the brainchild of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) which is the most powerful cricket house in the world. IPL was started by the BCCI in 2008 to curtail the private cricket league called Indian Cricket League (ICL). BCCI and International Cricket Council (ICC) did not recognise ICL and there was a ban on the players who participated in ICL.
The main intention of creating IPL was to create a fair chance for the domestic players and to improve standards of domestic cricket but whether that is indeed achieved is still not a fully answered question. It’s basically a franchise format of tournament, where the teams are owned by franchises and players play for their franchise and are paid by the team owners.
One cannot be biased in the conclusion on the extent of lavishness of the tournament or whether this is yet another money minting avenue for the rich business houses and some rich celebrities with excellent opportunities for wide publicity and the sport is used just as a reason for lavish partying. One has to consider different sides of views.
Let’s consider the Boon side of thought:
• IPL has helped the players especially the domestic players and uncapped players at national level to know the actual dimensions of cricket at international level.
• It has created a platform for the senior international players to share their experiences with young emerging players and help them in giving definite direction.
• It has created many young talents such as Pragyan Ojha, Abhishek Nayar, Mohit Sharma, Naman Ojha and Murali Vijay to be selected for national team due to the performance in IPL.
• The salary or incentive or match fees given to the domestic players had been very less otherwise but IPL has given these players good amount that can be used for training also.
• It has not only helped the Indian domestic players but has also helped foreign uncapped players of various countries in the same dimension.
• It has also resulted in improvement of infrastructure of cricket stadiums in different parts of the country and expanded the scope of media professionals.
However, the tournament can be considered as a Bane on the following grounds:
• Various events in the past have led to an impression that the tournament is moving away from its main goal of improving domestic cricket and looks like becoming home for gamblers.
• The match fixing issues which were almost brought to an end by serious laws popped up again after the commencement of IPL and will be a serious threat to the game in future.
• Some team management members and players were found to indulge in match fixing and spot fixing issues and this is a serious question on the ethical values.
• Due to the lavish spending incurred during the tournament, it appears that it has become a business rather than trying to improving the status and pride of the cricket.
• Given the remuneration in the tournament, some players have become complacent and lost their rhythm and are not selected for the national representation.
• Two years earlier it was made clear that cheerleaders would not have any part in the dugout but we see cheerleaders in the studio as well and this might result in earlier problems.
IPL has given India a name and fame in addition to attracting tourists and generating additional tax revenue. It has given a fair chance for players around the world to have healthy interaction and develop team spirit. If the systems are placed properly and participants follow ethical practices without any compromise, it can truly become a bigger and better mega event in future.