Indian Premier League - a damp squib?

Filed under: Sports by Hari
Posted at 08:25 IST (last updated: Sun, May 24, 2009 @ 19:17 IST)
I know it's still early days for the IPL and I shouldn't judge it prematurely, but somehow, after months of hype and hoopla, I had a shrewd (well, not so shrewd) instinct that the actual matches would be something of a let down. Understandly, the first couple of matches haven't really captured my imagination.

In my view, the IPL has some big disadvantages compared to the ICL which really drew me in despite the lack of official recognition, big names and sponsorship. And many people I've spoken to have expressed the same feelings, which leads me to believe that I'm not alone in my assessment.

Some factors counting against the IPL:
  • Smells too much of money power and arrogance (read: Sharad Pawar and the BCCI). I know a lot of cricket fans might disagree, but that alone has been a big turn-off for me.
  • Has the "me-too" factor stamped all over it. In spite of the IPL being the "official" league, everything about it feels phoney and duplicate. All right, it has the big names, but the teams seem to have been put together in a hotch-potch manner and there just doesn't seem to be a sense of harmony among the teams (which was apparent in the ICL).
  • Many of the foriegn players in the IPL will be leaving for international duty after a while. This will definitely take the sheen off the league. In contrast, the ICL, being shunned by the cricketing world at large, definitely has the advantage of keeping its contracted players playing for the league over a period of time.
  • Believe it or not, I actually believe that local players should be given more importance than the foriegn players. And the ICL actually promoted the local boys and helped them gain recognition. Names like Ali Mortaza, Stuart Binny, Rajagopal Sathish, Tejinder Singh and Syed Mohammed come to mind. On the other hand, the IPL seems focussed only on the big names - the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Saurav Ganguly, Mahendra Dhoni and so on.
  • Last, but certainly not least, the media attention given to the IPL has made me sick of it already. That the ICL was widely ignored by most of the media has actually given it something of an advantage and allowed the promoters to focus exclusively on bringing out a quality product. On the other hand, I feel that the IPL promoters know that their product will sell anyway, so might not be too worried about the game itself.
  • A minor gripe: the team names chosen by the promoters are horrible. Case in point: Mumbai Indians, Bangalore Royal Challengers, Kings XI Punjab? :crazy:

I'm aware that all these are subjective issues, and I fully acknowledge that my opinions might be completely out of sync with reality, though. :|

9 comment(s)

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  1. I am almost ignorant on happenings related to cricket but by and large agree with your views.

    Comment by Shrinidhi hande (visitor) on Mon, Apr 21, 2008 @ 09:28 IST #
  2. Shrinidhi, I can understand how people who don't like cricket will have one more reason to hate it because of the IPL. Really, even cricket fans might become sick of it all soon enough.

    Comment by hari (blog owner) on Mon, Apr 21, 2008 @ 09:40 IST #
  3. yes... :yes:

    Comment by Shrinidhi Hande (visitor) on Mon, Apr 21, 2008 @ 12:08 IST #
  4. Hari, all said and done, I think we'll be enjoying the contest better between players who are currently on the international circuit than retired players or second-rate players. That, I believe, is the single most important reason that the IPL has better media attention as well as public attention.

    Comment by Sudipta Chatterjee (visitor) on Mon, Apr 21, 2008 @ 21:55 IST #
  5. Sudipta, such an attraction is short lived. I am already bored of seeing the international players. While there might be a novelty factor for a short time it will disappear quickly.

    Unless the local players really play well and make a name for themselves, I'm afraid the IPL will be a flop. The presence of international players is merely icing on the cake. The cake still has to exist, though.

    Comment by hari (blog owner) on Tue, Apr 22, 2008 @ 10:08 IST #
  6. I agree with all your points. After all the hype I have been left curiously empty by it thus far. I always felt it would be a little hard to identify with the teams and the names (me being an Australian), but nonetheless I'm a little disappointed.

    The mencoder GUI is a nice idea, by the way. Just one thought: learn PyQt. ;)

    Comment by foo (visitor) on Tue, Apr 22, 2008 @ 22:03 IST #
  7. foo, thanks for the comments. It's not just confusing to you, it's confusing to Indians as well, because of the hotch-potch arrangement of the teams.

    Also thanks regarding the mencoder GUI. I don't like QT myself because of its licensing issues.

    And Tkinter was the most cross-platform solution to a GUI available and built into Python. ;)

    Comment by hari (blog owner) on Wed, Apr 23, 2008 @ 08:44 IST #
  8. I saw the match live from stadium for the first time last saturday... Experience was not impressive...details at blog.

    Comment by Shrinidhi (visitor) on Mon, Apr 28, 2008 @ 18:06 IST #
  9. I read it, Shrinidhi. I'm glad I wasn't tempted to buy a ticket.

    Chepauk Stadium is a furnace at this time of the year (well, at any time of the year, anyway :p) and the ticket price is not worth it.

    Comment by hari (blog owner) on Mon, Apr 28, 2008 @ 18:33 IST #

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