Aw, man!! The Indian Premier League is'nt Indian anymore!! It has been confirmed by the BCCI that this year's IPL will be held either in England or South Africa.
I had a feeling that it might be cancelled due to security circumstances, but shifted abroad? Never!!
I guess its just the 'PL' now. Imagine watching Rajasthan Royals defend their titles at Lord's and being called the Indian Premier League champions. Every time the word Indian is heard on the screen, the whole country will moan and groan together, the same way their promotional adverts are going.
This shift in venue would mean a lot more hassles for IPL manager Lalit Modi to face.
First and foremost, the time. Let's say, the IPL will be played in England. India is five-and-a-half hours ahead of England's time. Now we Indians would not like to watch the 'early' start match at 9:30 PM, would we?
Lalit Modi also said that they were looking to reduce the number of players playing in the IPL. What is the use of that? The local players will obviously be excluded but that is'nt the idea, is it?
The main idea is to give international experience to young local cricketers. If that is'nt happening, how is it going to work?
Another question I am pondering over is, will the British or South African crowd go to watch the IPL? No doubt that cricket is enormously famous there but with the restriction of only four foreign players in each side, recognising players for them will be tough.
Then again, for these 'unknowns', this is a huge opportunity to show their talent abroad. You never know, we may see Dinesh Salunkhe play for Kent next year.
But in the end, the income for IPL may have a huge advantage. With most Indians now watching the matches on the idiot box, ad slots will be tough to get and obviously the highest bidder will get a slot.
Therefore, profits are expected for Lalit Modi, which he desperately needs after losing the elections for the Rajasthan Cricket Association President post.
As an Indian, I am very disappointed with this decision. The buzz in the cities will no longer be there and watching matches live is now impossible (unless someone comes and gives me a free ticket to England, of course).
But on the flip-side, the security concerns were large and players were hesitant to come to India. Surely now, there would'nt be much of a problem and the IPL will have its star-power.
Whether it becomes successful or not, is an answer only time can tell. Lets hope watching IPL or 'PL' rather, at home from England will be same as last year, and the excitement remains upbeat.