IPL news

Flintoff sale rigged at 2009 IPL auction - Modi

George Binoy

February 7, 2012

Comments: 144 | Text size: A | A

Andrew Flintoff bowls during game one of the IPL's second season, Chennai Super Kings v Mumbai Indians, IPL, 1st game, Cape Town, April 18, 2009
Andrew Flintoff played three games for Chennai Super Kings in 2009 before an injury ended his tournament © Getty Images

Lalit Modi, the former IPL commissioner, has said he was arm-twisted in to rigging the 2009 player auction to ensure Andrew Flintoff was sold to the Chennai Super Kings. N Srinivasan, the BCCI president and the managing director of Indian Cements, the company that owns the Super Kings, dismissed Modi's allegations as lacking in "substance or truth".

Modi, who was sacked as the league's commissioner on charges of financial irregularities and is currently based in London, also claimed that the exclusion of Pakistan players from the 2009 IPL season was because of "arm-twisting" by BCCI officials.

"I shouldn't have let that [the rigging of Flintoff's sale] happen", Modi said during an interview to CNN-IBN, an Indian news channel. He also said the IPL was no longer the level playing field on which it was built, and that rules were changed to suit the bigger franchises. He conceded there was a lack of transparency and said the tournament had moved far enough from its basic principles to affect its long-term viability.

Srinivasan, who was BCCI secretary at the time of the 2009 auction, denied the allegations. "All I can say is that there is absolutely no substance or truth in what he [Modi] is saying," he said. "If he is talking about 2009 why is he saying all this in 2012."

The most damaging of Modi's statements concerned Flintoff's auction. Asked whether it had been rigged, he said: "Yes that is a fact. I made it clear that time. That onus was on me and as chairman I should have not allowed that to happen then. I was arm-twisted to allow Andrew Flintoff to go to Chennai Super Kings. I'm to blame for that. It's a fact."

Chennai bought Flintoff for $1.55 million at the auction in Goa, making him the most expensive player at the time alongside Kevin Pietersen. In buying JP Duminy for $950,000, Mumbai Indians had effectively ruled themselves out from the bidding for Flintoff, and Royal Challengers Bangalore did not enter the bidding for him at all. Rajasthan Royals tried to keep pace, but after buying Shaun Tait they had only $1.5 million left in their purse. The Deccan Chargers showed no interest in Flintoff, and Chennai eventually got him. Flintoff, however, played only three matches in the 2009 season before returning home injured. Knee surgery then ruled him out of the 2010 tournament.

In the interview, Modi also commented on the absence of Pakistan players from the 2009 tournament. They played the first season in 2008 but the Mumbai terror attacks in November that year put their future participation in doubt. Some Pakistan cricketers were part of the 2009 auction but they did not attract a single bid from any of the eight franchises. Modi said "arm-twisting" by the BCCI "that nobody should pick them" had led to the shut out of Pakistan cricketers.

The BCCI has been under scrutiny and criticism following the decision by Sahara, the sponsors of the Indian team and owners of the Pune Warriors IPL franchise, to pull out of its association with Indian cricket. Pune Warriors did not take part in the IPL's supplementary auction held in Bangalore on February 4. Modi said that in the light of the Sahara dispute, he would not have allowed the auction to take place. "I would have not allowed the rules to be changed at first place. There would have not been a problem with Mr Subrata Roy or anybody had the rules been consistent."

The pullout he said was "a big blow" for the BCCI, which was struggling to retain its sponsors. "We cancelled the contract with Nimbus without encashing their bank guarantee. With Kochi, Sahara, Nimbus and Sony contracts going down, it's close to Rs 10,000 crores [approximately $2 billion] loss to BCCI."

Modi also criticised the IPL's decision to allow the franchises to retain up to four players after the contracts expired at the end of the 2010 season. Chennai and Mumbai Indians were the only teams to retain four players.

"The retention clause was only for first three years. All players were supposed to go back to auction after first three years," Modi said. "In the fourth year [2011] that did not happen and they allowed the players to stay back. That became a problem... [it] was at the detriment of the new teams. When the new teams come in, that's a problem for them and I had pointed it out last year. If you pull out few things the entire model is going to fall apart."


Modi kills his own dream

Lalit Modi turned up on India's TV screens again, earnest, confessional, talking about what had happened to the IPL and Indian cricket in his absence. One IPL team has pulled out, two more are in arbitration, a fourth in litigation, the BCCI has dissociated with its broadcast partner Nimbus, lost its team sponsor Sahara, the team itself is losing and rights are hard to sell. Modi spoke forcefully about a list of the errors committed by BCCI's honchos in the IPL and its discriminatory practices that worked against all but the two strongest teams and even admitted to wrongdoing on his part - of being "arm-twisted" by "senior BCCI officials."

During his tenure, Modi was the IPL's chief mascot and the BCCI's most energetic fund-raiser, earning the clout to twist a few arms himself. Not the meek accessory he says he was in the cases of Flintoff and the Pakistan players. Unlike the IPL's current governors, Modi ensured that the league always looked like its marketing plan. It was a shiny, megabucks, high-octane package of cricket and glamour that drew big spenders towards its bonfire of vanities. To make that happen, though, the IPL's rules became its bendy toys - starting in Modi's time itself. Sometimes the rules were applied, sometimes rejigged, to suit a few beneficiaries. Money from public auctions "tie-breakers" was kept private and team ownership patterns were equally opaque and could never really be understood.

Now in exile, Modi's new marketing strategy is to become the IPL's lone truth-teller when he is in fact the man who wrote its source code. What he said on TV is merely affirmation of what was largely known: that the IPL's glitter disguised a closed-door clique of the wealthy who, rather than playing by the rules, played with them.
Sharda Ugra

George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo; Sharda Ugra is senior editor

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (February 10, 2012, 2:52 GMT)

why they r not playing with Pakistan and there is no Pakistani cricketer in IPL

Posted by   on (February 10, 2012, 2:47 GMT)

my appeal to the Indian media that they should ask BCCI to clear their position and why they are not playing with Pakistan , cricket fans are very disappointed by the steps taken by BCCI in recent times .

Posted by electric_waco_WAP4 on (February 10, 2012, 1:47 GMT)

Just because Pak beat England in dusty UAE, it became best team in the world? Playing on UAE pitches is as good as playing in Pak, if not better. I want to see this so called world beater Pak team visit Eng and Aus in next few months...Lets talk then. Hold your horses till then.

As for as IPL, given a chance, every Pak player would love to play in it. Sore losers

Posted by ravindias on (February 9, 2012, 21:54 GMT)

@LillianThomson . You are 100% correct. I am not a pakistani, but I have to agree with you.In India cricket has become just a business. All the Indians are starting to play for money other than there country.Look at the way they play for there IPL teams and then look at the way they play for India,big difference.In Test's and ODI's combined they are only the 7th best team behind. 1. Pakistan 2. South Africa 3. Aus 4. Eng 5. Sri Lanka 6. NZ 7.Ind 8. WI. Statistics never lie and what you see is what you get.

Posted by satish619chandar on (February 9, 2012, 13:33 GMT)

@LillianThomson : One more thing to add.. Its not the youngsters the problem during the debacle in Australia and England.. The failure of more experienced and organized players who learnt to play the game when there was no IPL was the reason.. You can't say a IPL ruined the game of Dravid, VVS , Sehwag, Sachin and Gambhir..

Posted by satish619chandar on (February 9, 2012, 13:31 GMT)

@LillianThomson : Regarding comparison between India and Pakistan, it is rather unwarranted i would say.. Pakistan didn't play in grassy and bouncy wickets but on tracks similar to home.. Since it is considered as home, they have previlage to prepare their own wished tracks too.. Asad and Azhar along with Misbah put more value to wicket than any of the batsman in current players.. They are incomparable as on current form.. If BCCI need to ban T20 cricket, why not other boards too ban it before it affects their country.. Do they need to wait for the calamity to strike them? @Gizza : I wish what u say happens sooner than later.. 6 teams could have lesser matches with more options for Indian players.. Atleast, IPL wont be blamed for player's failure..

Posted by satish619chandar on (February 9, 2012, 13:26 GMT)

@LillianThomson : IPL does have its financial irregularities and administration issues.. From cricketing point of view, IPL is a 70 day tournament where the players play 14 T20 games.. In addition, the players play domestic matches where they play lots of Ranji games and Zonal games where they play longer format.. In addition, they have A tours too.. If at all we blame the unavailability of fast and bouncy tracks to practice in India for the debacle rather than the IPL.. Every country has the T20 leagues and we saw Aussie players playing in BBL in midst of the test series.. The performance of the player is purely dependent on how they motivate themselves.. If he is not going to give his all for intl matches, the board should give him the freedom to play in T20 leagues alone as he s good in that.. Pick other players who put extra yard to represent in other formats..

Posted by spinkingKK on (February 9, 2012, 13:10 GMT)

I hope this IPL gets completely cancelled. What a waste of money for such a silly game of hit and miss!! Go Modi go! Put a stop to this.

Posted by Gizza on (February 9, 2012, 11:42 GMT)

@LillianThomson, I think your point is well-made although India have had tougher opposition than Pakistan within that period. I don't think the IPL will die an instant death. I think its popularity and influence will gradually wane over time. This year's format will probably revert to the one in the first three years with 8 teams instead of 10. Now that the salary cap in many situations has been exposed to become a sham, it will be a matter of time before the smaller franchises want to get out or simply aren't making a profit out of the venture. I'm guessing there will be a 6-team season either in 2013 or 2014 then a year or two after it will close down or at least be dramatically reduced (half as long as it is now). By then another half-generation of young Indian cricketers will have damaged techniques and impatient minds but the recovery will finally begin.

Posted by Third_Gear on (February 9, 2012, 9:13 GMT)

IPL is nothing but an auction drama produced by BCCI.

Posted by LillianThomson on (February 9, 2012, 8:21 GMT)

Five years ago, I used to worry that India's financial muscle would make it cricket's superpower. But instead, the Indians have squandered it all on self-indulgent T20 nonsense which has damaged their players' techniques and spoiled them rotten as pampered millionaires. Since last July, India has the following record for Tests outside India: P8 W0 D0 L8. Pakistan's record outside Pakistan in the same period is P8 W6 D2 L0. One country has tough, hardworking, old-fashioned cricketers in its Test team, while the other combines geriatrics hanging on to keep the paychecks coming in with rockstars who have never built a Test innings. Kohli and Rohit are more gifted than Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq. But which pair would you trust to turn impending defeat into victory in a Test match, as they did last week in Abu Dhabi? Sooner or later the BCCI needs to ban T20 cricket and outlaw conflicts of interest.

Posted by   on (February 9, 2012, 7:07 GMT)

After all these stories i would like to see DLF pulling out of IPL sponsorship. That will be the happiest day in my life, if it happens before this IPL-V.

Posted by Babloo3544 on (February 9, 2012, 6:13 GMT)

BCCI inadvertently did PCB a favor by excluding them from IPL, look how they beat World No 1 ! Way to go Pakistan. Being an Indian, I absolutely detest Indian cricket in its current form, shape, management and fan base. Indian's will never learn!

Posted by stringfellow101 on (February 9, 2012, 6:07 GMT)

ICL might not have the best grounds not the biggest of names nor coverage yet it was much more entertaining then IPL and much better managed. Until and unless the $ have the say IPL or any other event will always remain a CIRCUS like WWE (noora Kushti).

Posted by   on (February 9, 2012, 6:00 GMT)

Well, the cricket fans are having fun watching IPL, who cares what BCCI or Lalit Modi says... And BTW Flintoff made no difference to the CSK team..

Posted by bharath74 on (February 8, 2012, 23:31 GMT)

@anilkp: I said We on behalf of millions of Indians responsible for watching IPL.

Posted by ramaswamy80in on (February 8, 2012, 21:41 GMT)

As a DC fan Only hope left tofight MI and CSK is to give 51% share of DC to S. Pawar or some one very powerful like lakshmi mithal ....by doing so we can be on level playing gounds with these teams . otherwise pull out ,there is no fun in playing MI or CSK with this team .

Posted by anilkp on (February 8, 2012, 20:44 GMT)

Bharat74, you cannot speak for me. You have no right to say "we Indians", that includes myself and I feel hugely embarassed because of IPL. You may have seen a million positives with IPL, I (and many other Indians) have seen none. Even I (and many other Indians) can see a million negatives of IPL. I (and many other Indians) do see a role for IPL in recent white-washes that the National team has endured. I wish an anti-IPL revolution could spread so that the BCCI learns a lession for good (but that is wishful thinking). A brainless entity never learns anything, and going by Sutherland's recent statements, the CA is shedding its brain too! Soon there will be a time when cricket puritans will live only in fiction.

Posted by shahzaibq on (February 8, 2012, 20:17 GMT)

I think Sharda Ugra's comment should not have been included in this piece. It is an opinion, and should have been published seperately. News should be news, and not someone's opinion of it. Standards of Journalism, right?

Posted by nsrinivasan on (February 8, 2012, 18:49 GMT)

look at all the ipl fans jumping all over the place to support their incredibly pointless league.these revelations from modi just lend credit to theories that ipl is just a domain to make money for the bcci by selling the people this ludicrous tamasha of cricket.all those who think its hunky dory with this indian pathetic league can continue to waste their precious time and money on it while the rest can laugh at ipl because of what it really is : tamasha

Posted by Rajesh. on (February 8, 2012, 18:43 GMT)

Who is lying......... The BCCI or Lalit Modi !? I believe both !!

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 17:54 GMT)

Indian cricket only can get competitive if the play Pakistan which will give their players confidence instead of IPL.

Posted by FitzroyMarsupial on (February 8, 2012, 16:30 GMT)

Well said Yolk Eater. We should all get behind this people - the planets have aligned nicely to make the IPL wobble, if we, the viewing public withdraw our patronage it will fall. Modi and Allen Stanford are cut from the same cloth. You had your ego trip guys - now go away and let us have our game back.

Posted by IndiaPrevails on (February 8, 2012, 16:27 GMT)

"Its better to be poor and respected than rich and humiliated......." Well said Blueangle. You hit the nail right on its head and this is coming from an Indian supporter. Greed, of whichever variety it may be, never pays in the long run.

Posted by profrm on (February 8, 2012, 16:15 GMT)

Lalit Modi has gall sitting miles away from India and talking all sorts of rubbish to keep himself in the news - the unholy nexus of film stars, politicians and big business which he spawned has almost killed cricket in India

Posted by ajaychiba on (February 8, 2012, 16:01 GMT)

IPL is a cancer not only to Indian cricket, but also to world cricket. It has left Its destructive influence behind in South Africa with CSA board members taking huge bonuses that were not declared. CSA is in huge turmoil thanks to IPL.

On the field, IPL has destroyed Indian test cricket. The sad thing is that whilst fans are angry about IPL and what it has done to Indian cricket, all will be forgiven once the circus begins. Fans will continue in their thousands to fill stadiums to watch mediocre cricket.

Posted by bharath74 on (February 8, 2012, 15:46 GMT)

I dont understand why Pakistani public is worried about IPL

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 15:20 GMT)

IPL/BCCI, I as a Pakistani thank you, for not letting our players play in the league. We are on our way to become the greatest Test side in the world.

And who else wants an India vs Pakistan in the next 10 months. Please put your hands up :).

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 15:02 GMT)

Hindsight being twenty-20 (pun intended), I can honestly say thatt NOT letting Pakistani players play was one of the best things to have happened to Pakistan. Imagine how many more Asifs, Butts and Amirs would've been the product of this trash party. As a Pakistani fan, I've never enjoyed the IPL (even when our guys played) and indeed results have reflected thatt by NOT playing in the IPL, our players have remained fresh and actually gotten better over a period of time.

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 14:34 GMT)

IPL should be FLOPPED this year because of the EGO of BCCI and their behave with other cricketing nations of the world specially with the MINNOWS ...............

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 14:19 GMT)

IPL is the Death of Cricket in India

Posted by Yolk_Eater on (February 8, 2012, 14:13 GMT)

@bharat74: i am an indian

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 14:09 GMT)

I am with Yolk eater, IPL has killed the Indian cricket team's motive to win !

Posted by vertical on (February 8, 2012, 14:04 GMT)

@bharath74 speak for yourself I'm not proud of it

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 13:49 GMT)

Lalit Modi is just seeking publicity after being in exile.He was the brainchild behind the IPL and enjoyed all the money while it lasted.Now with the difficulties Indian Cricket is facing he has just come to point a finger at his fellow partners in crime.I am just praying IPL will be a huge flop this year to teach the BCCI a lesson.After the poor performance of Team India they can't expect the IPL to get crowds.The national team is the backbone of Indian Cricket and all the money depends on it.Not from the IPL Circus.

Posted by eyballfallenout on (February 8, 2012, 13:20 GMT)

i wish the bcci would ban Aus players so they can focus on playing real cricket....

ipl and big bash suck........ i really hope they don't mess up shield cricket to push 20/20 garbage.

Posted by Blueangle on (February 8, 2012, 13:12 GMT)

Thanks to Modi, BCCI and whoever helped to keep Pakistani Player out of "indian Pathetic league". This was indeed a blessing in disguise for Pakistan cricket. I hope they dont allow Pakistani Players to play IPL ever. Pakistan player may not be as rich as their Indian counterparts but definitely they become better cricketers. They might have lost some money but they have earned a lot of respect in the cricket community. Way to go Pakistan. Its better to be poor and respected than rich and humiliated.......

Posted by Boblaw on (February 8, 2012, 13:09 GMT)

@ Harvinder, No way you can compare indian revenue from ipl to any american/canadian sports. This year Superbowl for NFL brought in rating of 111 million viewers this year, which was an all time record, it was viewed in over 150 countries... each superbowl commercial cost as $3million/per each 30 second commercial.

Point im trying to make is.. Any so called 'pro cricket' league can never compete against any NorthAmerican Leagues.... Cricket's international structure is flawed.. If a play plays for both his country and an ipl team, he is obliged to honor his nation first, eventhough he has signed a contract with an ipl team, thats not how NA sports work.

Lets take NHL as an example, National Hockey League is ranked 4th among all pro sports in NorthAmerica as far as revenue is concerned. its a league of 30 teams.. and the value of the cheapest NHL team which is Phoenix Coyotes is considered to be $135million. Toronto Maple Leafs and New York Rangers are 500+million each.

Posted by Philip_Gnana on (February 8, 2012, 13:05 GMT)

If at all there is anyone to be blamed for the IPL, it is the viewer and the spectator. They are the ones who are paying for it with their air time/tickets. No viewers and No spectators = ZILCH income. It will be back to base for all cricketers....or will it? The players who have sold their soul for the IPL money will quit test cricket. We will then know how deep their love for the game was. Philip Gnana, Surrey

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 12:34 GMT)

In a few years BCCI will be saying - "We were the most powerful organization in cricket and how did we blow it?"

Posted by bharath74 on (February 8, 2012, 11:25 GMT)

IPL is India's pride, and nothing can stop it and we Indians are extremely proud of it. Yolk eater@if ur players are not allowed, u have to remember that it is not World League. I am sure with time IPL will become more transparent with its policies Yet again as an Indian i am extremely proud of IPL!!!

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 10:20 GMT)

I have only one question... should the players who did not perform in the test series between India and Australia be allowed to play in the IPL...??? if they cant perform for their national team why should they be allowed to make money off of IPL...??? any comments... BAN the 'Stars' IPL will die its own death...

Posted by AbAdvani on (February 8, 2012, 9:54 GMT)


Posted by PutMarshyOn on (February 8, 2012, 8:31 GMT)

How often do we read about memorable IPL games? I hope no-one is under any illusion it has anything to do with cricket.

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 8:30 GMT)

Remove Srinibashan from Board President as well as the other members.

Posted by Yolk_Eater on (February 8, 2012, 8:15 GMT)


Posted by Yolk_Eater on (February 8, 2012, 8:11 GMT)

And all the Pak fans who feel cheated, i would say this was a blessing in disguise for your team, your players got saved. Look at ur whitewash of England, and look at our miserable performance down under.

Posted by mosursubramaniankailash on (February 8, 2012, 8:06 GMT)

I always believed that the IPL bidding is/was a set up. Though players play their heart out, the team formation looks like an arranged marriage....Why was mumbai allowed to play 5 foreign players in Champions league? How mumbai got mitchel jonson for the base price? How pollard went to mumbai?..... IPL team owners have invested millions of dollars in IPL, They want their team to win the tournament at-least once for them to make both ends meet....The IPL organising committee would see to that all the teams win in certain way.....This is no rocket science.....

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 8:05 GMT)

@Bobla. IPL is related to India. And if we take count of Indian currency then surely they are way ahead of other giant leagues. It is not always about money. it is about entertainment and public is getting it. With all the controversies surrounding IPL, it is hurting the reputation of BCCI. Money is flowing in for cricket. But it is not that much in comparison to other sports if we see the reality. But thank God, we don't kill people just because of a bad match. Cricket should remain a gentleman's game and I am happy with the playing spirit of all professionals at international level. Never seen people hitting each other. Just a glare would do. Perhaps bigger money, bigger ego and bigger clashes. But when we are getting loads of entertainment without getting physical, it is worth it.

Posted by Simoc on (February 8, 2012, 7:42 GMT)

This guy is just describing why he got sacked. He's no good. IPL is fine while its going. Good TV. Good money for players.If the sponsors are pulling out something is amiss with the model. It can work as we have seen though players appear to be way overpaid for a months work.

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 7:40 GMT)

So the news that Flintoff was rigged to join a team is bigger than the news that Pakistan were left out intentionally? Way to go cricinfo! Great journalism now i see where your priorities and loyalties lie! WITH THE BCCI!!

Posted by sirvivfan on (February 8, 2012, 7:38 GMT)

Somebody said ICC should take action against BCCI and IPL. Are you kidding... ICC is BCCI, money talks! Disgraceful people?

Posted by Marcio on (February 8, 2012, 7:19 GMT)

@Boblaw, a if NFL is flourishing outside of North America, LOL. I have seen NFL played to an almost empty house - in Australia.

Posted by PunjabiTola on (February 8, 2012, 6:44 GMT)

Is Flintoff bigger news here or BCCI forcing not to include Pakistani players? So what should be headlines here?

As usual the world is playing with Pakistan and even cricinfo avoid to put Pakistan in headlines

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 6:44 GMT)

we hate ipl!!!! as an indiuan iam telling from my heart!!!!! bcci is a fraudulent board

Posted by cricpolitics on (February 8, 2012, 6:41 GMT)

Thanks to BCCI for not letting Pakistan players participate in the IPL. Look where Pakistan team stands now in the test cricket vs. Indian cricket team who are being kicked around like an orphan child around the world.

Posted by Gizza on (February 8, 2012, 6:22 GMT)

@Boblaw, as flawed and problematic as the IPL is, we don't need Americans complaining about how boring cricket is. I imagine ESPN would have specialist websites on those Yankee sports you talk about so you don't have to talk about the MBA or NFL on Cricinfo. By the way, it is ironic that Americans say cricket is so stop-start due to the over breaks, etc. when the Superbowl was one of the most stop-start games of sport I have ever witnessed (and I could only watch about 10 minutes before falling asleep!).

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 5:38 GMT)

its horrible BCCI is ruining cricket

Posted by Praxis on (February 8, 2012, 5:19 GMT)

The timing just couldn't have been better, right after eight straight overseas losses. I am eagerly waiting to see how much popularity IPL retains this year. Given the impact it has had on Indian cricket up to now, if it stays popular then I'll be extremely disappointed.

Posted by Boblaw on (February 8, 2012, 4:45 GMT)

lol whole IPL is a joke.. they think they can compete against organized professional leagues such as NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL wth is this auction all about?

Albert Pujols signed a 10 year 254 million dollar contract with Anahaim. Alex rodriguez has more money than entire IPL lol 10 years 275million dollars. Lebron James Miami Heats 6 years for 109million.

These are just examples of "REAL Pro sport contracts"

good think i gave up on this dying sport called cricket, stadiums barely have half the stands full.. just watch any NFL games .. u wont find 1 empty seat in those 40+thousand capacity stadiums.

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 4:12 GMT)

IPL = WWF. fans and those who pay to prop up the IPL = Suckers!!!!!!!

Posted by Precioustar84 on (February 8, 2012, 3:47 GMT)

IPL is a leech. Its the worst thing ever to happen in India. Even though I can accept loss, I cannot accept any loss due to this circus show made for all businessmen, not for Team India fans. I'm quickly losing interest in the team seeing how IPL has ruined the players. There is no need for IPL to be played yearly and especially when your team is facing whitewashes! THAT should be the concentration. Not lame IPL. I'm SO glad I never watched IPL when it started and never will. I REQUEST all fans in India to stay away from it if you care to same Indian cricket!!! @All Pakistanis - you guys should feel blessed not to have your players participate in IPL. It would've ruined your players just like it has ruined ours. There is NO philosophy behind IPL except work less, play less and make millions! Cricinfo please publish

Posted by Vishal_07 on (February 8, 2012, 3:09 GMT)

The article above does not make it clear on how Flintoff bid by CSK was rigged. It says that Mumbai was out of cap room with their purchase of Duminy, Bangalore and Deccan did not enter the bidding, and Rajasthan had only $1.5 million left. And therefore Flintoff went to Chennai. How was it rigged again?

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 2:58 GMT)

Is Flintoff bigger news here or BCCI forcing not to include Pakistani players? So what should be headlines here?

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 2:44 GMT)

Going by the news, we have to conclude that there will be more CSK players getting the place in Indian ODI team in Australia for facing the 'BIG' event in IPL. Already we have seen Dhoni, Raina, Ashwin and Jadeja in the last match who all belong to CSK. Soon we may have to have quota system based on IPL franchisee.

Posted by srivatsacertain on (February 8, 2012, 2:37 GMT)

These hypocrites of BCCI put Indian cricket and India to shame on an international platform!

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 1:45 GMT)

Whats wrong in retaining 4 players, In one year if we see a complete different team than last year , it will lessen our spirits only. That was a fine decision. Anyway BCCI is gonna kill this tournament with rules and restrictions and all those nonsense. They should learn from EPL and other soccer tournaments. Kochi is out Pune in doubt wat else. I like the spirit of IPL bt sad to say nothing is going good at the moment.

Posted by Vedahametham on (February 8, 2012, 0:36 GMT)

Why is he bringing up this from the pigeon(Pandora) box? Why didn't he quit then when he was arm twisted or leg twisted. I don't say the others are genuine but there will be no credibility if he comes up with these details after he has been sacked. The heroes are those who will fight in the ring.

Posted by   on (February 8, 2012, 0:30 GMT)

And this is an ICC endorsed event. Shame

Posted by xylo on (February 8, 2012, 0:03 GMT)

Like the "Quick Comment" section by Sharda!

Posted by applethief on (February 7, 2012, 23:44 GMT)

Current test form of India & Pakistan tells us all we need to know about the influence of the IPL. Sure, Pakistan players might not be make all the dollar$ like all the other t20 mercenaries playing 70 pointless popgun matches in India for a month, but it's been the best thing to happen to Pakistan cricket these past few troubled years. Time for the PCB to watch on as the BCCI implodes under the weight of its ineptitude while the team suffers, instead of it always being the other way around. Let's hope that the PCB shows the kind of class that the BCCI did not by offering to help them, and to act in the best interest of the global game, instead of copying the BCCI's policy of narrow self-interest.

Posted by jonesy2 on (February 7, 2012, 23:17 GMT)

why would they want flintoff though? the IPL is officially a joke, it was fun for a few years but now its just getting in the way

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 23:16 GMT)


Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 22:59 GMT)

@Arafat Habib: This is the IPL Rules...Whoever wins the title the next year OPening & Final match will be held there...Make sure to know about the IPL rules and also the tradition of the Cities before commenting on the public....

Posted by KrazyToes on (February 7, 2012, 22:14 GMT)

@ Arafat Habib - Chennai are defending champions for past 2 years - thats why the finals is held there.

Also, dont comment about tradition of Chennai - what the heck do u mean by "s it one of the most traditional cities like Mumbai or Kolkata?" - ???? nonsense. Chennai is as traditional as Mumbai or Kolkatta if not more. Are u even from India to understand this ?

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 21:59 GMT)

@Arafat Habib Finals The Finals has to happen in one of the 2 cities playing in the Final.. The Final happened in Mumbai last 2 seasons so it happened in Chennai this time.. Nothing wrong with that....

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 21:55 GMT)

Chennai hosted last yr final coz they won the prev year idiots....they hosting again COZ THEY WON AGAIN

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 21:48 GMT)

@ Arafat Habib: Because Chennai is the champion in 2010 IPL 3 edition, which is held in mumbai. At that time IPL management officially said that winning team will earn a opening and Final match at their home Ground. And u cant compare Mumbai & Kolkata with Chennai. Not only Mum & Kol are Traditional place, but in comparing with chennai Mumbai & Kolkata deserves 2 & 3 place in tradition & culture, which is below chennai(No.1) .

Posted by Desihungama on (February 7, 2012, 21:46 GMT)

Actually, Pakistanis not playing in IPL is a blessing in disguise for them. Now, you don't want to see another Asian Giant go the way of India! Do you? Their absence make the competition less colorful and somewhat flawed but then again we can't have it both ways. It's best if Pakistani players do not play in IPL at all. In future, there will be leagues springing up everywhere like Australia, S. Africa, England. I am sure Paksitani players will be back with a bang in those leagues.

Posted by pakistantrumpcard on (February 7, 2012, 21:40 GMT)

and now none of the english players have been auctioned off...its creepy the way the BCCI uses the IPL to 'punish' and humiliate players who they see as a threat, or have defeated indian cricket team recently....wow, pathetic....new low for BCCI and sadly, for indian cricket too

Posted by pakistantrumpcard on (February 7, 2012, 21:32 GMT)

thank God they left out Pakistan players. we don't want to be part of that joke of a tournament which ruins any cricket talent in players. we never want to be in IPL. we play for our country only. Pakistan Zindabad.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 21:12 GMT)

I dont understand the reason y they have to auction the players? teams should be allowed to sign any player they like,,,depend on the player if he accept the offer from frenchise,,, same as it happen in county cricket,,,,BCCI can allow them maximum foreign players ,,,,,,, y is the auction????????

Posted by Patchmaster on (February 7, 2012, 20:40 GMT)

The IPL is such a joke anyway, no one really cares who wins or loses, outside the Indian fan base. I am an avid cricket fan, and hardly ever watch the IPL, it's just so lame.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 20:07 GMT)

Question for Mr. Srinivasan, why the opening match, final match & one of the Qualifiers is scheduled to be held in Chennai? Last year too, the final was held in Chennai...... Is Chennai the Capital of India? Is it one of the most traditional cities like Mumbai or Kolkata?

Posted by SanjivAwesome on (February 7, 2012, 20:00 GMT)

This would make a good theme for a TV serial around business & sport. I always knew that IPL was business first - Modi's revealations confirm the wheeling and dealing that really goes on inside the big businesses in US, India, UK, Australia, indeed everywhere in the the free world. Scary part is sport needs money to survive while money is generated from a capitalism based business model.

Posted by raju_bharwad on (February 7, 2012, 19:52 GMT)

There you go Mr. N SRINIVASAN, the BCCI president and the managing director of Indian Cements, the company that owns the Super Kings.. Truth never hide for long. I hope you wd read this all comments.. Specially frm SanjeevAkki.

Posted by AjaySridharan on (February 7, 2012, 19:45 GMT)

This is what greed begets

Posted by anilkp on (February 7, 2012, 19:36 GMT)

I clearly do not see a problem anywhere! Might--may it be of money or muscles--always talks and rules. That has been the ugly rule of the world always. The respected and the wise do not use money and muscles, and they use their intellectual wisdom in decision making. BCCI is known as neither wise nor intellectual; so what else do you expect? They have money and they want to hire people who can run crazy for 3 hours a day. They have absolute right to pick whoever they want. Who are you or I to complain? If BCCI-IPL stinks so much to you guys (me included), just stay away. Period. That means, do not watch, listen, think, read or write anything concerning BCCI-IPL. Stay aloof. If you instead want to get involved, accept what you get. Period.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 19:21 GMT)

its not sport anymore its a business

Posted by Alexk400 on (February 7, 2012, 19:07 GMT)

Modi is telling the truth!.

Posted by TamilIndian on (February 7, 2012, 18:10 GMT)

Unless conflict of interest is removed this is not going to work. There will be some controversy or other. How can you be head of BCCI, IPL and CSK all at the same time? Doesn't make sense. As for me I would urge all Indian fans to not view IPL on TV please. That is the only way BCCI will think about Indian Cricket. Thank you.

Posted by Sakthiivel on (February 7, 2012, 18:10 GMT)

Modi is a joker he will say all this nonsense sitting some where, Why didnt he came up these many year.

Posted by Sakthiivel on (February 7, 2012, 18:06 GMT)

Heading missing leading the topic. Its should be Pakistan players Exculsion.

Posted by Cricket_Only on (February 7, 2012, 18:03 GMT)

How come with all this information out in the wind, ICC is still allowing a place for IPL to be held in its callendar. Players participating in IPL should say soemthing about it too.....

Posted by kalyanbk on (February 7, 2012, 18:03 GMT)

I don't see in this article how anything was rigged. Everyone had the right to bid for Flintoff and CSK was the highest bidder. Where is the rigging? If there was rigging and that too by Modi himself why did Lalit Modi allow Rajasthan (his team) to bid upto $1.5 million. Also the Pakistan players story is a world known secret. This was the first IPL auction after the Mumbai attacks. There were concerns over whether Visas would be issued to these players. Don't ask, Don't tell.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 17:52 GMT)

I love cricket but find the IPL the biggest turn-off in the sport. The glitz and glamour is just so fake, the overdose of sponsorhip, the ad breaks: are you trying to be American? It's a tournament which breeds mediocrity, I'd have thought your nation was not so gullible as to be fooled by it.

Posted by screamingeagle on (February 7, 2012, 17:52 GMT)

drlimpel,it is not for humiliating foreign players. its is just about pakistani players not being welcome in india. thats all.

Posted by r1m2 on (February 7, 2012, 17:47 GMT)

I think I agree with others that the most important news in this article is the revelation about the systematic exclusion of the Pakistani players. And yet the headline is about something else, a less significant story, in fact one that is not clearly explained in the article. I am not sure what it means for Flintoff to be pushed to Chennai? That others were forced not to bid on him?

So why is it that the biggest revelation did not make the headline? is it because the writer is an Indian and does not care about Pakistani cricketer's participation in the IPL?

Is this comment going to be posted?

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 17:45 GMT)

Mumbai Indians and Chennai franchises are ruling the IPL.. Every franchise should be given equal chances to bid for a plyer. Hope Next year every player goes into Auction and see what reason MI could find to play 5 to 6 foreign players in a game.Other franchises will loose intereste as they are betrayed.. Give equal chance to everyone.. Hope one of the hardworking new franchise like RR or pune wins IPL.

Posted by pchikoop on (February 7, 2012, 17:39 GMT)

I think Modi is just trying to cash in on BCCI's current problems by throwing baseless allegations. Based on what has been described in the article about the proceedings that led to Flintoff being sold to CSK, one cannot determine how armtwisting could have happened. Its a clear case of some franchises not showing any interest in a particular player which is very normal and happens in an auction be it for players or any kind of artifacts. And some others had exhausted their capacity by spending huge sums on other players basically ruling them out of the bid for Flintoff. CSK it seems had the money left and outbid others. Simple as that. I couldnt find a trace of arm twisting as claimed by him.

Posted by faforce on (February 7, 2012, 17:38 GMT)

IPL is a game that businessmen enjoy. Not THE PEOPLE.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 17:29 GMT)

Well we know that BCCI must be behind it when the franchises didnt buy any of Pak players even though they were in auction. It was not the franchise's decision. BCCI also is not allowing the bilateral series, try to isolate Pak at your own peril, look now they whitewashed the no.1 team. The are performing well and more good performance will come in the future.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 17:24 GMT)

The grapes are sour - L. Modi a.k.a Looser Modi!

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 17:09 GMT)

Shouldn't ICC take strong action BCCI and IPL management for betraying the game?????????????

Posted by drlimpel on (February 7, 2012, 17:06 GMT)

I think the Pakistani players exclusion part is the bigger story here and should have been the headline. That is just shocking! I cannot think of any other reason except pure malicious intent to humiliate the players for doing this. I wonder if the same reasons were behind the completely unexpected cold shoulder to English and Aussie (other than the sidelined and now largely irrelevant Lee and Johnson of course) cricketers. If BCCI is trying to use IPL as the means to get back to foreign players for humiliating losses overseas then that just speaks volumes for their maturity level and is a bad omen for not only international cricket in general but indian cricket too.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 16:54 GMT)

corrupted game...stop watching IPL its nt sport its jst a business......

Posted by ProdigyA on (February 7, 2012, 16:52 GMT)

Modi has gone nuts. Every now and then he keeps coming up with some rubbish. It may be true but he has lost all credibility.

Posted by Sanjeevakki on (February 7, 2012, 16:48 GMT)

I just have one piece of advice to IPL governing Council... Just play the final between CSK and MI.... and habd over the Trophy to CSK... atleast by this Indian players will not be tired!!:-) Last but not the least for CSK - "Chennai Super Kings" Name will not hold good correctly...... It got to be "Cheat Srinivasan's Kings!"

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 16:47 GMT)

Guess Modi woke up from having an attack of Amnesia!

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 16:41 GMT)

what about bollinger's auction in 2010?.... there was some arm twisting tactics in that also...

Posted by Zahidsaltin on (February 7, 2012, 16:41 GMT)

Retention is ok as long as it is only about icon player and the local lads. There has to be some type of retention for the sake of fan loyality. I think IPL as a whole is falling apart and non of the guys in BCCI are so dynamic as Modi was. A contineous product development is needed to keep IPl attracting new people. May be they should widen it to the whole subcontinent by allowing one or two Frenchises from Pakistan to enter the competition. Imagin Lahore playing Mumbai or KKR playing Dhaka.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 16:41 GMT)

Modi and Ganguly should have been there in Indian cricket. Powerful people needed to play politics. idiot modi. why are u talking now

Posted by mishim on (February 7, 2012, 16:29 GMT)

Mr Modi, you have created this cult of money worship in cricket known as the IPL. Do not act like all you did was not do enough to stop rigged auctions or whatever. The creation and existence of IPL itself is a travesty. However, I do commend your marketing skills and I admit you are more affable than some of those stone faces in the BCCI. Ultimately though you will be credited with creating the false apex which eventually kills cricket altogether!

Posted by KarachiKid on (February 7, 2012, 16:22 GMT)

Lol. I keep saying IPL was the worst thing that has happened to Indian cricket. Pakistan has improved during this time while Indian batsmen are forgetting their skills and technique.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 16:18 GMT)

here comes Mr.Clean Modi , where you had gone all these days ??? freddie is no more in CSK nor in competitive cricket

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 16:15 GMT)

Shocking. If it is true. One contrast is apparent and condemnable. MI was allowed to field an extra overseas player underquestionable "special circumstances", whereas, fully knowing that Yuvi will not be available due to tragic circumstances, Pune was not allowed to use the funds originally allotted for Yuvi to bid for some one else. Neither Yuvi Nor the unusable money to bid for someone else. It's just not fare. What is sauce for the MI goose is s--t for the Pune gander! They are openly playing favorites. Govt interference will be worse as the Kalmadi episode shows. All the franchise holders unitedly can do some thing. But they would not co-operate. To make it worse one of them also happened to be BCCI chief, who wearing the BCCI hat can prevent franchisees putting up a common front. Using the same hat he can even buy over the support of MI, RCB or someone else.The greatest gambling joint Las Vegas' pin ball machines seems more trustworthy. God save Indian Cricket.

Posted by kesaraca on (February 7, 2012, 16:15 GMT)

sour grapes dude, everyone is expandable

Posted by doctornikki on (February 7, 2012, 16:09 GMT)

The hippocratic mentality of the BCCI about pakistani cricketers revealed..BCCI definitely acted upon indian govt's instructions..But it was good as pakistani players concentrated and r world beaters now while indians forgotten how to bat,bowl or bat..Thanks to ipl :-)

Posted by reality_check on (February 7, 2012, 16:09 GMT)

So BCCI first allows Pakistan players for IPL auction in 2009 and then secretly forces everyone not to pick them. On pathtic behaviour scale of 1 to 10, this is about 15. Cricinfo please publish.

Posted by datewithdestiny on (February 7, 2012, 16:07 GMT)

I do not believe everything that he says.. about Flintoff or even Pakistan.. BUT I do believe Srinivasan and Ambani would have pushed for retention of players... It was absolutely the wrong thing to do.. Especially when Mallya had come out of a franchise owner meeting where everyone agreed that all players should go back into the auction pool. So it was strange that the retention rule was introduced...

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 16:05 GMT)

Haha .............. The whole IPL is rigged.

Posted by reality_check on (February 7, 2012, 16:02 GMT)

How dare Modi blame BCCI and IPL. Both these entities are as pure and clean as wind driven snow (tongue in cheek).

Posted by donda on (February 7, 2012, 15:59 GMT)

What ever, modi stop giving statements, no body from BCCI and ICC is listening to you.

Thanks for letting us know that BCCI don't want to play against pakistan. Awesome job BCCI. So lame.

Posted by billy_bilal on (February 7, 2012, 15:57 GMT)

WOW! BCCI arm twisted to keep Pakistan out of IPL. Could not have done a better service to Pakistan Cricket. Thank You BCCI. that is one of the reasons that Pakistani Players have been able to keep their focus on International Cricket. IPL would have ruined Pakistan Cricket like it did for West Indies! Chis Gayle, Pollard smashes everybody in IPL while West Indies keeps getting smashed by everybody in International Crickets

Posted by Raki99 on (February 7, 2012, 15:47 GMT)

Corruption is at every level in india. Worst..... But still Lalit modi saying this? Just learn something from NFL and NBA, the worst team gets the first pick and so on.

Posted by applethief on (February 7, 2012, 15:47 GMT)

Corruption in the BCCI!?! Yawn.

Posted by alkasol547 on (February 7, 2012, 15:43 GMT)

OMG! what a shameful thing for BCCI... twisting arm to eliminate Pak players and then giving statements at that time that no franchise is interested because of bla bla bla.... that is total disgrace and shows the mentality of BCCI to isolate Pak cricket... how fair is that and how can they pretend to make IPL look like a global tournament... and how can ICC let such a thing happen ... After all that is a kind of FIX ... Isn't it guys?

Posted by ltcdrkishorekumar on (February 7, 2012, 15:43 GMT)

coward Modi !! Stays in london offer comments on indian cricket let him come to india and handle the situatiion Corrupt modi!!!

Posted by HawK89 on (February 7, 2012, 15:42 GMT)

IPL had its run. I watched to see the retired players play again, like gilly and hayden, but now, most of the players are the current players in this era. Rather see them play when they are playing for their country instead. Also it doesn't help when the indian international side isn't doing well. People get sick of watching a losing team, let alone a bunch of nobodies who can't make it to the indian international side.

Posted by Yolk_Eater on (February 7, 2012, 15:40 GMT)

the fans should stop watching cricket and let the BCCI know or for that matter, anyone associated with BCCI that we don't want to tarnish our image anymore by all these off field incidents. Anyway, there is too much cricket. The fan should give BCCI a message, we should stop watching the match until they realize that that as much as they make the players, the players make them too and they need to respect the players and the fans.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 15:33 GMT)

Too much political influence, poorly thought out league structure, franchise model, lack of transparency and ownership is the absolute cause of this mess.

Posted by Haleos on (February 7, 2012, 15:32 GMT)

Why is this guy talking now? Why did he not say anything before. Of course that time he was busy filling his coffers. Hypocrite.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 15:28 GMT)

And india says that it wants "PEACE" with pakistan... it dosnt allow pakistani players in IPL and it does not want to play with pakistan ...am dissapointed

Posted by manhoos4u on (February 7, 2012, 15:28 GMT)


Posted by nkoch on (February 7, 2012, 15:27 GMT)

It seems like Mr. Modi's losing it

Posted by Deenesh on (February 7, 2012, 15:27 GMT)

This only confirms the obvious with regard to the pakistan players. How else could the world champs not get picked. Not that big a deal anyways, let them make thier own league if they like the format so much. As for flintoff...he got injured didnt he, whats the problem. Modi is an attention case, 2 months from now he will "expose" something else to get himself back in the headlines.

Posted by rahulcricket007 on (February 7, 2012, 15:27 GMT)


Posted by ElPhenomeno on (February 7, 2012, 15:22 GMT)

Though I think Modi is just venting his frustrations, there maybe truth to what he's saying. Hell BCCI president is the owner of one of the teams but still claims there is no conflict of interest. ;)

Posted by unregisteredalien on (February 7, 2012, 15:20 GMT)

Hooray for cricketainment!

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 15:20 GMT)

and still people say that BCCI has nothing against Pakistani players! Please.. open up your eyes.. and I appeal to my Indian friends that they should pressurize their board to sit up straight and act fair! Indians are an honorable nation and their institutions should be so tooo!

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 15:18 GMT)

whatever modi says noone gives a damn!

Posted by PiyushD on (February 7, 2012, 15:17 GMT)

IPL is a big business and mafia BCCI is cashing in a big time, it is full of corruption from the frachising, auction to matches everything looks so artificial. It's all about money, we fans of Indian cricket appeal to world not to look down upon us due to our corrupt cricket board.

Posted by InnocentGuy on (February 7, 2012, 15:17 GMT)

Yes! Yes! This is good stuff. Whatever it takes to bring the IPL down!

Posted by   on (February 7, 2012, 15:16 GMT)


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George Binoy Assistant Editor After a major in Economics and nine months in a financial research firm, George realised that equity, capital and the like were not for him. He decided that he wanted to be one of those lucky few who did what they love at work. Alas, his prodigious talent was never spotted and he had to reconcile himself to the fact that he would never earn his money playing cricket for his country, state or even district. He jumped at the opportunity to work for ESPNcricinfo and is now confident of mastering the art of office cricket
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