IPL Teams OK With Curtailed Season, Expecting Rise in Viewership

Written by Rohit Pawar

BCCI will have to cross several hurdles to make IPL a reality in the extraordinary circumstances that have arisen due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, the franchises are maintaining a positive outlook and won’t mind even a curtailed season.

The potential window for IPL is from September to November and with Cricket Australia saying the prospect of staging T20 World Cup this year is “unrealistic”, the chances of staging the event have become brighter. Still, a lot of complications will have to be dealt with including zeroing in on venue(s) and ensuring biosecure environment.

Kings XI Punjab co-owner Ness Wadia says the venue will be decided based on availability of adequate infrastructure. “Considering the current situation, there are too many complications in hosting the T20 World Cup with 16 teams. Organising the IPL won’t be easy too. It has to be at a place which has adequate infrastructure, both on and off the field,” Wadia told PTI.

While Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) CEO Venky Mysore had recently said that he is against tinkering with the IPL format, Wadia has no such issues. “I am sure BCCI is putting all its efforts towards a full IPL but we have no issues even with a curtailed one. We have to be aware of the situation we are in and optimise ourselves,” he said.
Wadia stressed on the importance of being flexible including the eventuality of organising the league outside of India. “IPL has also been a very forward looking and flexible tournament and that has to be maintained during the COVID situation. Going back to 2009, within one month we switched from India to South Africa,” he said.

With the cricket loving public starved of action, Wadia believes there will be a spike in IPL viewership and so attracting sponsors will not be a problem.

“If it is a shorter tournament then automatically it would depend on the number of games. If there are the usual 14 league games, you are getting an X value from a sponsor, it will change if there are lesser number of games,” he said.

“Having said that, a lot of sponsors might be happy to see the IPL happening even if it is shorter. It gives them a lot of publicity. In my humble opinion, the IPL might happen with a larger audience base purely based on the assessment that world has been through so much and the world needs that outlet,” he added.

About the author

Rohit Pawar

An Independent I.T. Security Expert, Geek, Blogger & Passionate Programmer.