January 1, 2011

The IPL has fallen, long live the IPL

This was the year it all came crashing down for cricket's next big thing. But fundamentally hardly anything has changed
26

What about IPL 3 will you most remember? There's a damned good chance it won't be the cricket.

The IPL began 2010 as the league about to take over and roll over world cricket. It had expanded its competitive footprint from eight franchises to 10, its two new teams cost as much as its previous eight. Its brand value was pegged (out of thin, venture-capital air) at $4.13b. Season four would feature 74 matches instead of 60. The IPL was poised to obliterate ODIs, turn Tests into sepia-toned throwbacks and virtually redefine the stratosphere itself.

It has ended the year like a rattling jalopy, still moving towards auction day and opening night, but navigating by a roadmap that seems to contain more roundabouts and fewer exits.

In only its third year, this glitzy, ditzy "domestic" Indian event, which seduced the highest of priests, will leave 2010 looking like something out of, say, Indian hockey or weightlifting. It is swamped in public mudslinging, legal wrangles, ownership disputes, territorial battles, stay orders and stay orders on stay orders. Less than 10 days before that auction it is still not clear as to exactly who will be allowed in, how many teams will play in the next tournament and whether it will or will not feature playoffs.

Between October and December that number has oscillated between seven and 10. Everyone and his lawyer is involved in the scrimmage - the Enforcement Directorate, the Chennai police, the CBI, the Bombay High Court, several high-profile politicians and their kin. The IPL now has the full attention of all arms of the government - the executive, the legislature, the judiciary.

The single biggest "learning" from IPL 2010 must surely be that schoolkids now know what "facilitation fees" and "recusal" really mean. Kickbacks and abdication.

If the IPL has suffered nine months of infamy, both side are to blame. The events that followed El Modi's tweeting on about Kochi's ownership were the result of two years of utter lack of regulation within the BCCI. On Modi's part when doing IPL business in the BCCI's name. And on the BCCI's part for turning a blind eye to everything except the bottom line, under the excuse of the protection given to Modi by the Sharad Pawar regime.

The IPL was, in essence, a private club of Modi and his friends, where rules (whether the inspired invention of the "strategic time out" or the one of ads during overs) were made up as they went along. Its governing council did not govern and officials responded to questions about the IPL's practices by saying, "Look at how much money he makes for the board."

He has gone from being King Midas to the IPL's most rotten apple. Today, with two franchises fighting their termination by the IPL's new, unimproved governing council in courts, let's just say, he sure has company.

What should now be more than evident is that the tussle over the ownership and control of the IPL, between Lalit Modi and the men who were once his best buddies in the BCCI, is not that of new India versus old India. This tug of war is, in fact, a re-assertion of the BCCI's arrogance of monopoly and its overall lack of operational professionalism. On both sides of the argument we only see the self-importance of the Indian cricket establishment, differentiated merely by age. It is the worst of an India that has power, money and influence.

If the old BCCI's patriarchy handed out favours like Indian team managerships or committee posts to those who controlled its votes, Modi's IPL empire was built on business deals struck with friends and friends of friends, and IPL jobs doled out to well-connected children. The IPL was a 21st-century old boys' network, swirling with crony capitalism disguised by corporatespeak. It was nepotism in a Ferragamo suit, and it led to allegations of money-laundering and financial irregularities.

When the first of the dust settled and Modi was swiftly excised, all we could see was dirt. While many believe the departure of Modi was a chance for the BCCI to clean up the system, all the realist wanted was order and the installation of a stringent set of rules with little room for messing about. It was necessary because 2011 was to be a big year for the IPL. It should have kicked off phase two for the league, during which the entire player pack would be reshuffled in a new auction, and the arrival of two more teams would alter the league's geography and economics.

The tussle over the ownership and control of the IPL, between Lalit Modi and the men who were once his best buddies in the BCCI, is not that of new India versus old India. This tug of war is, in fact, a re-assertion of the BCCI's arrogance of monopoly and its overall lack of operational professionalism

What took place instead was a clumsy hatchet job. After Modi was booted out, hollering and tweeting, the BCCI then went about restructuring its governing council, seizing back control of the IPL by changing the constitution that Modi had himself pushed to get changed in order to allow BCCI office bearers a financial stake in his gold rush. Once that was done came the termination of the two franchises seen to be closest to Modi, Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals. Done without warning, done without discussion, negotiation or arbitration.

In what is a Modi-esque move, the IPL's rules continue to be constantly tinkered with, particularly those that benefit its most influential. This time it's about the "retention" of players. In a league where the Chennai Super Kings are successful on the field and owned by BCCI president-elect N Srinivasan, and the Mumbai Indians are, well, both very rich and very powerful, the IPL's playing field is bumpy for its less privileged. Only 12 players were retained in all, eight between these two teams.

The lone smart move from the IPL this year has been to ally itself with the other national boards and so channel the supply of overseas talent into the league. The overseas players' boards will send out lists of certified players available for the IPL and also receive 10% of these players' contracted salaries. In putting this Soviet bloc-style system in place, the IPL has sidelined the player-agent completely and created a new source of earning for less wealthy boards. All the better to carve out tomorrow's unofficial IPL window with. And while IPL 4 will not have any after-parties, it will continue to remain out of bounds for Pakistani cricketers - and the Kremlin will not talk about that.

For all the fireworks of its first two years, the chest-thumping pride of India's "global branding" through it, and despite the regular announcements of new sponsorships, the IPL still looks and acts like what it says it is: a BCCI sub-committee rather than a contemporary cricket operation.

Between now and opening night, the IPL will be scrambling. Even the croniest of capitalists knows that only the cricket can improve the IPL's image, bolster its precious brand and rescue its reputation. It begins five days after the World Cup and the cream of international players must refresh themselves to provide both sparkle and stature. Many fingers will be crossed. Not merely those of the franchises but also of the IPL's governors. As much as all of India will want to win the World Cup, the BCCI top brass will want to stage an IPL that is efficient, successful, lucrative. And Modi-free. If it happens they will befriend the franchises again and all will be forgiven. And all will stay the same.

A few months after Modi was sent into the outer darkness, a journalist predicted great gloom for the IPL. Without "Lalit", he said, the IPL was doomed to be "middle class." Maybe he had actually been misheard. Perhaps he was actually being prescient. The IPL today is distinctly muddle-class.

Sharda Ugra is senior editor at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on January 2, 2011, 22:47 GMT

    "They should sack srinivasan. He is a egoist and destined for destruction."

    + INFINITY.....!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  • on January 2, 2011, 21:53 GMT

    oh come one..Why doe cricinfo keeps crying abt IPL..lalit modi is a genius! I think southies r just jealous..suck an egg will u?

  • DoubleDs on January 2, 2011, 7:23 GMT

    Whiny Cricinfo continues to try and disparage IPL on a daily basis. It's getting boring.

  • on January 2, 2011, 0:05 GMT

    Now i point some aspect of IPL in world cricket. Cricket belived to be 2nd most popular game in the world. But the fact is that its rarely be 2nd most popular sport outside sub continent. So the revival of this sport lies in IPL like league structure. Ice hockey or baseball, perhaps would be dead in this world if NHL or MLB wernt there. Live in a fact that this sport needs a qualitative professional league like IPL. If IPL wont there then some others but we cant ignore it.

  • on January 1, 2011, 23:37 GMT

    One request to our gentleman indians. What have u acheived in the world as a pride. Ipl brings a kind of proud feeling to we indians that see we r devloped. We can hold a tournament that is merely comparable to worlds mighty NFL and NBA. We cand make a sports brand that can valued in billions. And neither lalit nor bcci, its we, one and only people of india had made ipl worlds sixth best league brand. We r the people behind its success. And so we have to support it in its gloomy days.

  • on January 1, 2011, 21:00 GMT

    @RAAJ101 - just because you type in CAPS does not mean you are right. IPL is a mockery of a pretty viable format of cricket. Only because of the IPL overdose, cricket fans are burnt out by 20-20 and sadly has started the decline of 20-20. On top that, Test cricket is seeing a revival with the playign field evening out and more teams becoming suitable for the top spot. IPL on the other hand, is a typical Indian way of business management. Greed is plentiful and only a powerful few run the show and bend the rules to suit them. IPL was never a long term prospect like the NFL or NBA, which is the template that IPL had chosen, because NBA and NFL dont mess around with the ground rules and keep it fair, so that everyone involved have a vested interest in keeping alive for as long as possible. It's all going to come crashing down on these douchebags who claim to know what they are doing. It's a soap opera that in its last season.

  • Zahidsaltin on January 1, 2011, 20:10 GMT

    HERE IS THE FORMULA: As every product has a cycle, IPL cycle is on its decline. You need to develope it to add some rivalary and other dimentions. Keep the number of indian teams to 5, add two pakistani teams from Lahore and Karachi, Take one team from SL and then take one each team from SA, AUS and England. Let the SA, AUS and ENG team to base in India during the compition but give home grounds to Lahore, Karachi and Colombo to keep their home grounds. Scrap the Champ. trophy. THIS FORMULA WILL GIVE IT SOMETHING WHICH FANS NEED. You may not get the full pie but you will have it running for a very long time to come.

  • syedahmed91 on January 1, 2011, 17:19 GMT

    IPL has made cricket boring. It's all about money in ipl and not about cricket; pride and passion. It's all about finishing the season without getting injured so you can pick up the check and sleep well at night. I wish so much money wasn't invested in ipl and it was more about competing and winning than it would've been real fun to watch.

  • RAAJ101 on January 1, 2011, 16:49 GMT

    IPL IS COMPETITIVE CRICKET AT ITS BEST. IN 2011 IPL WILL BE HAVING 10 COMPETITIVE TEAMS WORLD CRICKET IS BORING BECAUSE TODAY IN WORLD RICKET THERE ARE ONLY THREE OR FOUR COMPETITVE TEAMS

  • Knightriders_suck on January 1, 2011, 14:59 GMT

    IPL is great, Though coming 5 days after WC it may be overkill. But I will watch it everyday. It is my evening TV fix for a month and half.

  • on January 2, 2011, 22:47 GMT

    "They should sack srinivasan. He is a egoist and destined for destruction."

    + INFINITY.....!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  • on January 2, 2011, 21:53 GMT

    oh come one..Why doe cricinfo keeps crying abt IPL..lalit modi is a genius! I think southies r just jealous..suck an egg will u?

  • DoubleDs on January 2, 2011, 7:23 GMT

    Whiny Cricinfo continues to try and disparage IPL on a daily basis. It's getting boring.

  • on January 2, 2011, 0:05 GMT

    Now i point some aspect of IPL in world cricket. Cricket belived to be 2nd most popular game in the world. But the fact is that its rarely be 2nd most popular sport outside sub continent. So the revival of this sport lies in IPL like league structure. Ice hockey or baseball, perhaps would be dead in this world if NHL or MLB wernt there. Live in a fact that this sport needs a qualitative professional league like IPL. If IPL wont there then some others but we cant ignore it.

  • on January 1, 2011, 23:37 GMT

    One request to our gentleman indians. What have u acheived in the world as a pride. Ipl brings a kind of proud feeling to we indians that see we r devloped. We can hold a tournament that is merely comparable to worlds mighty NFL and NBA. We cand make a sports brand that can valued in billions. And neither lalit nor bcci, its we, one and only people of india had made ipl worlds sixth best league brand. We r the people behind its success. And so we have to support it in its gloomy days.

  • on January 1, 2011, 21:00 GMT

    @RAAJ101 - just because you type in CAPS does not mean you are right. IPL is a mockery of a pretty viable format of cricket. Only because of the IPL overdose, cricket fans are burnt out by 20-20 and sadly has started the decline of 20-20. On top that, Test cricket is seeing a revival with the playign field evening out and more teams becoming suitable for the top spot. IPL on the other hand, is a typical Indian way of business management. Greed is plentiful and only a powerful few run the show and bend the rules to suit them. IPL was never a long term prospect like the NFL or NBA, which is the template that IPL had chosen, because NBA and NFL dont mess around with the ground rules and keep it fair, so that everyone involved have a vested interest in keeping alive for as long as possible. It's all going to come crashing down on these douchebags who claim to know what they are doing. It's a soap opera that in its last season.

  • Zahidsaltin on January 1, 2011, 20:10 GMT

    HERE IS THE FORMULA: As every product has a cycle, IPL cycle is on its decline. You need to develope it to add some rivalary and other dimentions. Keep the number of indian teams to 5, add two pakistani teams from Lahore and Karachi, Take one team from SL and then take one each team from SA, AUS and England. Let the SA, AUS and ENG team to base in India during the compition but give home grounds to Lahore, Karachi and Colombo to keep their home grounds. Scrap the Champ. trophy. THIS FORMULA WILL GIVE IT SOMETHING WHICH FANS NEED. You may not get the full pie but you will have it running for a very long time to come.

  • syedahmed91 on January 1, 2011, 17:19 GMT

    IPL has made cricket boring. It's all about money in ipl and not about cricket; pride and passion. It's all about finishing the season without getting injured so you can pick up the check and sleep well at night. I wish so much money wasn't invested in ipl and it was more about competing and winning than it would've been real fun to watch.

  • RAAJ101 on January 1, 2011, 16:49 GMT

    IPL IS COMPETITIVE CRICKET AT ITS BEST. IN 2011 IPL WILL BE HAVING 10 COMPETITIVE TEAMS WORLD CRICKET IS BORING BECAUSE TODAY IN WORLD RICKET THERE ARE ONLY THREE OR FOUR COMPETITVE TEAMS

  • Knightriders_suck on January 1, 2011, 14:59 GMT

    IPL is great, Though coming 5 days after WC it may be overkill. But I will watch it everyday. It is my evening TV fix for a month and half.

  • on January 1, 2011, 13:58 GMT

    wow!!! exciting year this was for indian cricket

  • MaruthuDelft on January 1, 2011, 13:57 GMT

    Surely IPL has not improved cricket in India. Raina is an IPL hero but he is a useless test cricketer. There must be some kind of regulaion to link test match performance and the cost of players to franchisees. Say if Laxman is paid $500k Hydrabad should pay $50k to IPL. If Raina is paid $500k Chennai should pay $500k to IPL. Something like that.

  • on January 1, 2011, 13:18 GMT

    Looking at India's T20 WC performances , it is easy to forget that India was the winner of the inaugural version in 2007. Since IPL started, India has never reached the semis of T20s World Cup.The IPL also adds to the workload of the players, takes away essential match practice for international series and can cause burnout of players. It should be kept only once in 2 years or even once in 4 years instead of every year. And the number of matches should be reduced drastically.

  • Percy_Fender on January 1, 2011, 12:32 GMT

    Lalit Modi would have us believe that IPL was the creation of a genius. Before the IPL there was the ICL the sponsors of which should to my mind get the credit for bringing into India a format of a crazily popular game like cricket for mass viewing. Lalit Modi's contribution is really the razmatazz that sadly, brought this format and maybe the game itself its dubious value.As someone who loves this game I can say that for me,it is the cricket alone that matters not even the presence of the Katerinas and Deepikas of this world. It does make for lovely viewing I admit but for a cricket lover the game is paramount. So even if Lalit Modi is sent to some backwaters for his omissions and commissions, the IPL will go on. It is the excitement which it generates of our players rubbing shoulders with some of the living legends of the game on the playing field that will sustain spectator interest. The money is enough to keep every player interested.I believe.IPL 4 will be a revelation.

  • on January 1, 2011, 10:24 GMT

    The problem may be Modi, Tharoor or whatever but it is actually people's fault. We look at the IPL from a 'business' or 'political' perspective which is unfair, we must now start looking at it from 'sport-event' perspective. The best thing is that we must now focus on the matches and not on other things just like how Barclays Premier League and the alike are treated

  • Gizza on January 1, 2011, 10:02 GMT

    I think IPL 4 will be like the previous three seasons. Those who aren't fans will still find it boring, controversial and damaging while the supporters will come in big numbers and provide the buzz that the tournament needs. In a way it will be the Commonwealth Games where everyone from all corners were having a go at it but in the end nothing bad happened.

    And Vilander is right. The IPL can decide whoever will play in tournament. Pakistani cricketers do not have a "right" to play in the tournament. Whether they be Aussie, English, West Indian or anybody else except for Indians, it is a privilege to play in it. Michael Clarke also found out about that the hard way. The point of excluding the Pakistani players was to take a moral stand against their government's weak stance against terrorism, even though the players or public are not at fault. Having said that, I wouldn't mind letting them in for one year and see how it goes.

  • Sanks555 on January 1, 2011, 9:30 GMT

    Continued... The fatal flaws in IPL model are also seen in the performance of Indian cricket team. India is no.1 in Tests, no. 2 in ODIs, and no.8 in T20.

    Hence, the IPL should be scrapped. The fans want to see good cricket, development of new players, opportunities for new players, and respect for players. Fans and cricket players do not like a system that prevents domestic players from becoming rich, a system in which respected cricketers (like Gilchrist) are auctioned like cows (although the money goes to them), a domestic tournament that almost gives no opportunities to new players, a shady den of corruption and nepotism. And although the average fan has no ill-will towards cheer girls, they would rather see cricketers rather than foreign cheer girls and old actress.

  • Sanks555 on January 1, 2011, 9:21 GMT

    Continued... Hence, if any IPL franchise develops new players, which is unlikely given the lack of sports expertise of owners, they will not be able to retain them as the concept of player loyalty is foreign to the league. The fact that the owners expect fan loyalty perhaps suggests that: 1- The fan watches IPL for the owners and not for the players. If that was the case, why did they pay the BCCI so much? 2- The Indians are very attached to their cities. They are perhaps unaware of the extent of inter-city migration in India, which nullifies their assumption.

    4- The current player retention system is nothing short of slavery. The retained players have no choice to refuse to be retained and the owners have no obligation to pay any minimum amount to the retained players. Let's assume MI decides to pay Tendulkar $0.2 million, much below his market rates. What can Tendulkar do? He cannot even play badly, as that would negatively affect his 21-year reputation and off-field earnings.

  • on January 1, 2011, 9:13 GMT

    nice one..almost covered all the points in few hundred words.. the guy shashank manohar is interesting...for some reason section of Indian media portrays him as a sage (for some weird reasons like he doesn't go to party, or wear a watch or keep a cell phone), although his board has taken some of the most vengeance driven decisions in the BCCI history. I don't know for sure as my source of information is the same media..there is no Wiki page for him and he is not a politicians who is always in news..would like to know to more and hope Cricinfo will dig deep on this guy, may be in another IPL article...

  • Sanks555 on January 1, 2011, 9:03 GMT

    I would like to present my analysis of the IPL and the new changes made in it. 1- I do not know why people watch IPL but I personally find the concept boring. 90 percent of India is not represented by the original 8 IPL teams. Given the legacy of Indian Ranji teams, a county-style T20 tournament, with participation of foreign players, would have been easier to arrange and perhaps more popular. And more importantly, t would have given exposure to new players. 2- The IPL system does not give any great exposure to new players. There are 4 foreign players and about 2 well-established Indian players in every match. And there are very few T20 matches that see active contribution from more than 6 players. 3- The IPL does not have any player development scheme and in three years, the tournament has not developed a single player. This is expected from a system that believes that players are motivated only by money.

  • Rush_D on January 1, 2011, 8:11 GMT

    the vibrance of the IPL will be lost in the 2011 edition.... i myself didnt watch 2010 compared to the previous 2 versions... it was heavily marketing oriented and was a makeup that went severely wrong for the glamour girl of BCCI!!! Modi maybe right/wrong... but he was the figurehead behind the whole IPL and his non-involvment in 2011 will be felt!!! i guess India has a problem with whatever they do innovate... they seem to be unable to sustain the momentum which is quite shameful... the commonwealth games was a shamble.. im waiting for the F1 grand prix and wont be suprised if bernie eccelstone has a go at the preparation!!! all the best... wish that the interest for the IPL will surge again and let us enjoy Sports ENtertainment at its best.. like the first edition...

  • on January 1, 2011, 7:39 GMT

    A useful start to better understand the turf battle : but surely,there is a lot more to be written and analysed.Hope S.Ugra will do so

  • Vilander on January 1, 2011, 6:31 GMT

    And exactly why should India or Indians allow any Pakistani to work in India ? when there might be so many of them working overtime in india and elsewhere for many other pursuits not necessarily beneficial to India. Typical bleeding heart liberal view from the author.

  • Vilander on January 1, 2011, 6:27 GMT

    Mumbai and Chennai paid heavily to retain their players it was no conspiracy, it was business sense, they have built their brand, and a team that their supporters would follow. How else do you want to run a franchise sport ? no body said it would be easy to win IPL or build a team. The author who might have been a good writer on politics is looking for conspiracies and negatives to write about constantly in a sport mag which though understandable is yet ultimately laughable.

  • Alexk400 on January 1, 2011, 4:55 GMT

    They should sack srinivasan. He is a egoist and destined for destruction.

  • akshay4india on January 1, 2011, 3:40 GMT

    IMHO, I think that either IPL should be scrapped altogether, or be handed to manage by people that are competent enough to do it. I'm not a big fan of the IPL, but for the sake of people that are, they deserve a well managed tournament of good quality.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • akshay4india on January 1, 2011, 3:40 GMT

    IMHO, I think that either IPL should be scrapped altogether, or be handed to manage by people that are competent enough to do it. I'm not a big fan of the IPL, but for the sake of people that are, they deserve a well managed tournament of good quality.

  • Alexk400 on January 1, 2011, 4:55 GMT

    They should sack srinivasan. He is a egoist and destined for destruction.

  • Vilander on January 1, 2011, 6:27 GMT

    Mumbai and Chennai paid heavily to retain their players it was no conspiracy, it was business sense, they have built their brand, and a team that their supporters would follow. How else do you want to run a franchise sport ? no body said it would be easy to win IPL or build a team. The author who might have been a good writer on politics is looking for conspiracies and negatives to write about constantly in a sport mag which though understandable is yet ultimately laughable.

  • Vilander on January 1, 2011, 6:31 GMT

    And exactly why should India or Indians allow any Pakistani to work in India ? when there might be so many of them working overtime in india and elsewhere for many other pursuits not necessarily beneficial to India. Typical bleeding heart liberal view from the author.

  • on January 1, 2011, 7:39 GMT

    A useful start to better understand the turf battle : but surely,there is a lot more to be written and analysed.Hope S.Ugra will do so

  • Rush_D on January 1, 2011, 8:11 GMT

    the vibrance of the IPL will be lost in the 2011 edition.... i myself didnt watch 2010 compared to the previous 2 versions... it was heavily marketing oriented and was a makeup that went severely wrong for the glamour girl of BCCI!!! Modi maybe right/wrong... but he was the figurehead behind the whole IPL and his non-involvment in 2011 will be felt!!! i guess India has a problem with whatever they do innovate... they seem to be unable to sustain the momentum which is quite shameful... the commonwealth games was a shamble.. im waiting for the F1 grand prix and wont be suprised if bernie eccelstone has a go at the preparation!!! all the best... wish that the interest for the IPL will surge again and let us enjoy Sports ENtertainment at its best.. like the first edition...

  • Sanks555 on January 1, 2011, 9:03 GMT

    I would like to present my analysis of the IPL and the new changes made in it. 1- I do not know why people watch IPL but I personally find the concept boring. 90 percent of India is not represented by the original 8 IPL teams. Given the legacy of Indian Ranji teams, a county-style T20 tournament, with participation of foreign players, would have been easier to arrange and perhaps more popular. And more importantly, t would have given exposure to new players. 2- The IPL system does not give any great exposure to new players. There are 4 foreign players and about 2 well-established Indian players in every match. And there are very few T20 matches that see active contribution from more than 6 players. 3- The IPL does not have any player development scheme and in three years, the tournament has not developed a single player. This is expected from a system that believes that players are motivated only by money.

  • on January 1, 2011, 9:13 GMT

    nice one..almost covered all the points in few hundred words.. the guy shashank manohar is interesting...for some reason section of Indian media portrays him as a sage (for some weird reasons like he doesn't go to party, or wear a watch or keep a cell phone), although his board has taken some of the most vengeance driven decisions in the BCCI history. I don't know for sure as my source of information is the same media..there is no Wiki page for him and he is not a politicians who is always in news..would like to know to more and hope Cricinfo will dig deep on this guy, may be in another IPL article...

  • Sanks555 on January 1, 2011, 9:21 GMT

    Continued... Hence, if any IPL franchise develops new players, which is unlikely given the lack of sports expertise of owners, they will not be able to retain them as the concept of player loyalty is foreign to the league. The fact that the owners expect fan loyalty perhaps suggests that: 1- The fan watches IPL for the owners and not for the players. If that was the case, why did they pay the BCCI so much? 2- The Indians are very attached to their cities. They are perhaps unaware of the extent of inter-city migration in India, which nullifies their assumption.

    4- The current player retention system is nothing short of slavery. The retained players have no choice to refuse to be retained and the owners have no obligation to pay any minimum amount to the retained players. Let's assume MI decides to pay Tendulkar $0.2 million, much below his market rates. What can Tendulkar do? He cannot even play badly, as that would negatively affect his 21-year reputation and off-field earnings.

  • Sanks555 on January 1, 2011, 9:30 GMT

    Continued... The fatal flaws in IPL model are also seen in the performance of Indian cricket team. India is no.1 in Tests, no. 2 in ODIs, and no.8 in T20.

    Hence, the IPL should be scrapped. The fans want to see good cricket, development of new players, opportunities for new players, and respect for players. Fans and cricket players do not like a system that prevents domestic players from becoming rich, a system in which respected cricketers (like Gilchrist) are auctioned like cows (although the money goes to them), a domestic tournament that almost gives no opportunities to new players, a shady den of corruption and nepotism. And although the average fan has no ill-will towards cheer girls, they would rather see cricketers rather than foreign cheer girls and old actress.