Thursday, April 17, 2008

IPL Gets Underway

The entire cricketing world is waiting for the BCCI sposored Indian Premier League to unfold. The response IPL will get in next one and half month will decide future of International Cricket. Will the Bollywood glamour add to cricket frenzy or the overdose of cricket will gradually cause spectator interest to wane away? Inernational players are seen to compete fiercely when they play for their countries. Will they be able to show the same intensity while playing for city-based teams? A Brett Lee is chagred up when he sees a Tendulkar facing him. Will he be as charged up when he bowls against a Ricky Ponting?
Cricket is a game of traditions. However, over the years, it has gone through major revolutionary tranformations. emergence of Twenty-20 format is the latest modernisation to the game. As always, there have been voices od dissent from the former players and cricket lovers from the older school of thought. Respected commentators like Ian chappell are already saying that twenty-20 is not the real cricket. ( ) . The first T-20 world cup has been a huge success. The IPL is in fact inspired by India's truimph in the world cup. But a tournamant which basically an invitational legue wherein teams are 'assembled' by cash rich film personalities, business houses and media barons hardly excites a die-hard cricket fan who thrives on bitterly fought India-Pakistan ties or arch rivalary between England and australia for Ashes.
However, it remains to be seen how the 'Youngistan' responds to IPL. With the involvement of proven marketeers such as Shahrukh and Ambani having stakes in it, one cannot rule out a heady mix up of slam bang cricket and song and dance entertainment becoming a hit with the young and upwardly mobile urban youth.
The ODI format when introduced also witnessed criticism from cricitcs and fans of Test Cricket. However, in last thirty years, there has been a consensus that ODI format has in fact helped the standard of Test cricket to improve. One clearly sees that Test matches are more result oriented. The fielding standards of even teams like India and Pakistan have gone up. One can only hope that this new generation of cricket also has something to offer to the 'original' form of cricket!