IPL 2024 to be played entire in India: Arun Dhumal, IPL Chairman

                                                      Indian Premier League Trophy. Pic credits (BCCI) 

The 17th edition of the Indian Premier League will be played entirely in India, confirmed Arun Dhumal, the IPL chairman. It lays to rest the concerns that the general elections, to be held this year likely in April and May, might play spoilsport as far as the scheduling of the tournament is concerned. The T20 league is expected to commence on March 22.

“The IPL, we want to do it in India only,” Dhumal told RevSportz. “So, we will be in touch with the government agencies to figure out what will be the best way to go about it. Since the schedule of elections is coming out hopefully in the month of March, we may come out with the initial schedule of say about two weeks and we will work it out with the Election Commission and agencies as and when there’s some clarity on election schedule. Accordingly, we want to work around that, so that it can be organised in India itself.”

It is learnt that this year’s IPL will follow the template of the 2019 edition, when all the matches were played in India on a home-and-away basis. This time also, the idea is to finish the home-and-away fixtures as much as possible in the first phase so that towards the latter half, if required, things can be juggled, and neutral venues can be picked.

In 2009 and 2014, the IPL had moved out of India as it clashed with the general elections. In 2009, South Africa was the destination for the whole event, while in 2014, the first 20 matches were held in the UAE.

Franchises face certain commercial issues if the tournament is played outside India, for in that case they lose sponsorship revenue and gate receipts. For an IPL on foreign soil, total gate receipts are shared equally between all the franchises, while in India, franchises will have their respective home gates. Also, with the majority of team sponsors being Indian companies, they always like to have the tournament in India itself.

Meanwhile, this year’s IPL is unlikely to tinker with the playing conditions and/or rules. The Impact Player rule that was introduced in 2023 will be retained. 

As regards to the tournament’s title sponsorship rights for the 2024-2028 cycle, the race is getting spicier with Friday being the deadline. Tata Sons reportedly paid Rs 670 crore for the last two editions and they have been given the right to match the highest bid. Some brand categories like alcohol products, betting, cryptocurrency, real money gaming, tobacco and pornography have been barred from entering the fray and the reserve price is set at Rs 370 crore per year.

The BCCI, however, is expecting a manifold increase in the title sponsorship rights value, with the number of matches set to go up in the next three years. A total of 74 matches will be played this term, which could be increased to 84 in 2025 and 2026, and 94 in 2027.

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