What an extravaganza starts. Indian Premier League (IPL) is back with its 10th edition. However, still the controversy continues to haunt the game. Whenever there is a bloated money chest, a scam is inevitable. That is what, we witnessed in ninth edition of the IPL and it does not augur well for the game, especially in an Indian scenario. With such obscene amounts of money, this has become the norm. All the parties involved are accusing and counter accusing each other. The IPL extravaganza has become hotter. Finally when the dust settles, it will boil down to a state and the murkier role played by players and officials came in open spoil the image of Indian cricket. The IPL is nothing but a glorified way of making easy money and the gentleman’s game of cricket is brought to disrepute.
Let the show begin. The glitz of IPL10 will see 60 matches, 10 venues, 47 days of matches, 8 teams and total spend of Rs. 91 crores. The winner’s purse is Rs. 21 crores, whereas the runner up purse is Rs. 12 crores. Even though spinners may not have much share of the wickets, the medium-fast bowling will come to the fore in the beginning, in the middle overs and again in the slog as well. It will be an interesting contest between bat and ball if the results are not made known in the beginning of matches.
We term it as Indian Paisa League also because of big money in it. It is not useful to improve the standard of the game as observed by the Supreme Court. Big bucks attract star cricketers and showering of money is not for their class but for the player’s tag. This is clearly evident from the top grosses in IPL 10. Team India is in cloud nine. Many of the seniors have been injured in this year as well and that means the game of cricket has no value for talent. Thus, the form in International cricket does not matter much and we are longing to see the foreign recruits play well in an IPL season with Rs. 14.5 crore tag hanging on Ben Stokes. Big buck in IPL is just a tamasha and not connected to performance in any way. All is well should end well and making money is the only motive in cash cow IPL.
As the crackdown on bookies came in open and the involvement of players taking up an aerial route just like that of Gayle’s sixes, the game of cricket has brought disrepute to the country. In 85 years of International cricket, we have not achieved much while playing overseas matches but within India we are the Home Tigers and that is proved beyond doubt as we try to fix even IPL matches to win the coveted trophy. Lies, sleaze and deceit are all seen in the gentleman’s game of cricket and the standard of the game is nose diving to a very low level in India. Professional English players and the Afghanistan’s players got good price and we find few Bangladesh and New Zealand cricketers in the fray as well.
Cheerleaders have become instant hit in IPL like superstars and everyone accept the concept as a matter of entertainment. Jeers, cheers, protest against pom-pom girls are not confined to India. The IPL cheerleaders say they are ready for a makeover, if that is what the so called politician want remarked a cheer girl. It is indeed cheerleaders all the way and IPL continue as a cash cow. IPL is a tamasha and BCCI is an eyewitness to all the wrong doings in the field of play. Even photographers and commentators will be on the toes covering the games from all angles in the stadiums colourfully decorated for the day and night games with capacity crowd watching the game from all the stands.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)