Millennium Post

Home and away

Though the BCCI working committee decided on Friday  to wait till the announcement of the dates of general elections before taking a final call on the venues and tentative schedule of the seventh Indian Premier League, to be held between 9 April and June 3, there is a strong possibility that the cash rich league will be held in two parts at different venues. As per sources, not more than two of the seven weeks of IPL 7 are likely be played in India. The IPL governing council has received presentations from four interested cricket bodies, South Africa, UAE, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Considering past experience, South Africa surely have the best facilities to host an event of such scale. It has the best of grounds while the timing too will suit viewers from the sub-continent.

When IPL was held in SA in 2009 for similar reasons, it turned out to be a grand success with even Bollywood stars wooing the crowd. But it all might change this time, given the way it got embroiled in controversy and corruption in recent times. Hosting matches in India guarantees good return to the sponsors, who matter most at the end of the day. There is logic behind hosting IPL in India if it can be used to benefit local communities and entrepreneurs. But security concern being such big a factor, it is unlikely India would host more than two weeks of IPL action on home turf. However, the commercial viability of IPL and BCCI’s unparalleled dominance over all other boards might in future even force ICC to reformat its Future Tours Programme as per the Indian cricket jamboree.
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