Interesting news out of India this morning, as the Kochi Indian Premiere League franchise (you know, the fellas in the bright orange kits) have been booted out of the IPL for failing to make good on a financial obligation in their contract.
Unfortunately, this might be a sign of things to come. I do not foresee the league itself, or any of the major franchises having similar problems, but I think the smaller clubs are going to have a hard time surviving in the years to come.
I am not rooting for this, please do not get me wrong. As I have mentioned over and over on this site, I like the IPL, despite the fact that Twenty20 is my least favorite form of the game, and the last thing I want is for the league to fold. All things being equal: the IPL is good for the game. However the league really needs to look at successful leagues across the globe (Bundesliga, Major League Soccer, the National Football League, and County Cricket) to see how to best run a league financially. You cannot just throw the best cricketers in the world out onto the pitch every day for 50 days and simply cross your fingers that people buy tickets and kits. The league and its franchises need to be nursed and weaned and nursed again.
It’s not easy, but considering how wildly popular the sport is in India, I am sure the league will figure itself out sooner rather than later. There is just too much money to be made. Or, maybe, that is the problem.
Meanwhile, just up the road, there is a cracker of a test match happening in Colombo, Sri Lanka. I feel like what has been a wonderful three match series is passing me by, simply because of the time zone it is taking place in.
Yeah, it stinks that I cannot watch it, but if at least it was happening during my waking hours, I could follow the ball by ball.
And after tomorrow, the series is over. And the Zimbabwe-Pakistan series is over, as well. Yeesh.
Another curse of the American cricket fan: the time zone.
This week on the pitch: Ireland v Canada in ODIs today and tomorrow, as well as those positively silly make-up t20s between England and the West Indies.
I take it back, rain is not the real cricket killer, television is.
Oh, and the t20 Champions League qualifiers are happening this week, as well. Mildly interesting, I guess.