IPL: Owners pain, players gain
It seems like the dreaded seven-year itch has caught up with cricket’s most vibrant and exciting innovationthe Indian Premier League (IPL) the T20 format that has virtually revolutionized the sport.
IPL: Owners Pain, Players Gain, Latest Update. It seems like the dreaded seven-year itch has caught up with cricket’s most vibrant and exciting innovationthe Indian Premier League (IPL) the T20 format that has virtually revolutionized the sport.
Although, it caught the cricketing world by storm it has been no easy passage for the championship with hiccups affecting it from the second edition itself. It survived, thanks to the bravado of the then Commissioner Lalit Modi, who defied the Centre’s diktat and moved it to far-off South African.
Today, it appears like controversies have become bywords for IPL, which somehow manages to wriggle itself out of every scam, including the collective decision of the franchise owners to bar players from Pakistan.
Meanwhile, even as every fan is engrossed in the match-fixing scandal and the conflict of interest controversy, which is being taken to its logical end by the Supreme Court, a unique aspect that has impacted the owners and co-owners of the franchisees is going rather unnoticed.
There is no room for doubt that sportspersons and film celebrities rank foremost among people with an overwhelming belief (or fear) in the adverse power of superstitions and any sort of jinx that carry ominous bearings.
The IPL stands as a classic testimony and serves as a bad ambassador to such extreme beliefs. If one goes through the off-field happenings from the second/third edition, then it gets established beyond any doubt that things like bad luck, jinx and negative vibes have been hanging like Damocles Sword over the heads of almost every team owner, in one form or the other. Its repercussions have been so alarming that one who flirted with the IPL for a brief while is still languishing in jail because of alleged business excesses.
Many owners and administrators had to undergo torturous time after they ventured into the IPL sweepstakes.
The suave Lalit Modi, whose brainchild the championship has been, is on the run and is currently in London. He faces cases of alleged administrative fraud; Deccan Chargers, Kochi Tuskers and Pune Warriors have closed shop for ‘unrealistic and unviable’ propositions; several sponsors are also in deep trouble since jumping onto the IPL bandwagons.
Here is a look at the teams and the problems that have surfaced for the owners:
Chennai Super Kings: N Srinivasan was taken to the court for scandals like match-fixing and conflict of interest. The once allpowerful man, who currently heads ICC, has to decide between seeking re-election to the BCCI top post or be part of the CSK n the IP jamboree.
Delhi Daredevils: Its chief promoter, Grandhi Mallikarjuna Rao suffered massive losses and the GMR Group actually had severe problems with the Maldives airport project.
Kings XI Punjab: The co-owners, Priety Zinta ad Ness Wadia, washed dirty linen with their open spat that marred a good outing in the seventh edition. Co-owner Dabur Group is in the middle of a financial crisis following heavy losses.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Its charismatic owner Shahrukh Khan believed he was the king of all of Mumbai before he was thrown out and barred from entering the famed stadium for the next five years on charges of making obscene gestures and threatening poice and tadium officials.
Rajasthan Royals: Three of its players have been found guilty of match-fixing and the coowner Raj Kundra, who once claimed that he earns in a month what Salman Khan gets for a film, is ‘charged’ guilty for betting by the Supreme Court.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Its flamboyant owner Vijay Mallya’s problems have grown in multitudes after his team was put onboard the IPL. He has since been declared a willful defaulter.
Sunrisers Hyderabad: The Sun Group has been a late entrant but the problems have caught up wth it pretty fast. The owners appear to have inherited the legacy of the Deccan Chargers promoters. With the CBI enquiry against Aircel and SpiceJet changing hands and the 2G Spectrum the problems are only getting magnified for Dayandhi Maran.
Kochi Tuskers Kerala: Shashi Tharoor not only lost his seat in the General Elections but is in a major soup following the mysterious death of his wife, Sunanda Pushkar.
Deccan Chargers: Deccan Chronicle Holdings Limited has run into unprecedented financial losses; the mess is being probed by the CBI and the owner is out of the country.
Pune Warriors India: Sahara Adventure Sport India or more popular as the Sahara Group has been the face of Team India. Not only did it earn respect for sponsoring the team, the Group won accolades for being the sponsor of the natoonal hockey team. The owner, Subrato Roy’s fall from grace has been so terrible that today he is lodged in jail for alleged businesses frauds.
Mumbai Indians: The only team owner to remain blemishless is the combination of Reliance Group and Teesta Retail.
Perhaps, one is reading too much into this IPL-linked jinx but there is room for thought even to astrologers, who may tend to disagree.
By: Sridhar K Penna