GUGOBET is here today to introduce the Indian Premier League, IPL Indian professional Twenty20 (T20) cricket league established in 2008. The league, which is based on a round-robin group and knockout format, has teams in major Indian cities.
With the establishment of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), the IPL has become the most lucrative and popular outlet for the game of cricket. Games typically start in the late afternoon or early evening, so at least some of them will be played under floodlights at night to maximize television audiences for broadcasts around the world. Originally, league matches were played home and away between all teams, but with the planned expansion to 10 clubs (divided into two groups of five) in 2011, this format changed, with matches between some teams being limited to a single fixture. The top four teams play three playoff games, with the losing team getting a second chance to reach the finals, a gimmick designed to maximize potential television revenue. The playoff portion of the tournament features the four teams that have finished first in a series of knockout matches, giving a team that lost their game in the first round a second chance to advance to the final.
With the advent of the IPL, almost overnight the world’s best cricketers—who had seldom made the kind of money earned by their counterparts in other professional sports—became millionaires. The owners of the IPL franchises, who included major companies, Bollywood film stars, and media moguls, bid for the best players in auctions organized by the league. At the outset of the IPL, the well-financed Mumbai Indians had the league’s biggest payroll, more than $100 million. It cost the Chennai Super Kings $1.5 million to secure the services of Mahendra Dhoni in the initial auction for the 2008 season and the Kolkata Knight Riders $2.4 million to sign Gautam Gambhir, the opening batsman for the Indian national team, in the bidding for the 2011 season.
The eight founding franchises were Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Deccan Chargers (based in Hyderabad), Delhi Daredevils, Punjab XI Kings (Mohali), Kolkata Knight Riders, and Rajasthan Royals (Jaipur). In late 2010, two franchises, Rajasthan and Punjab, were kicked out of the league by the BCCI for violating ownership policy but were later reinstated in time for the 2011 tournament. Two new franchises, Pune Warriors India and Kochi Tuskers Kerala emerged from the league at IPL for the 2011 tournament. The Kochi club only played a year before BCCI canceled their contract. In 2013, the Deccan Chargers were replaced by the Hyderabad Sunrisers in the IPL.
The first tournament, held over 44 days in 2008, was won by the Rajasthan Royals, one of the smaller-market franchises, captained by Shane Warne, the great Australian bowler. In the wake of the IPL’s success, other cricketing countries scrambled to grab some of the riches by forming their domestic T20 leagues.
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