5 Things to expect in IPL 2017
The mega T20 event promises to be bigger and better than the previous editions.
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The new season of the biggest T20 carnival, the Indian Premier League (IPL), is all set to enthrall the audiences one more time. Ever since its inception back in 2008, the tournament has grown in stature with every passing edition. The IPL 2017 promises to be a bigger and better edition. Going by the trends, it will not be a surprising fact to see this edition be better than the predecessor year.
There will be a lot that the people will be anticipating and expecting from the tournament like every year. The timing of the tournament is such that most people wish to chill at their homes during the hot summers and they find perfect company in the form of cricket. The tournament promises to have some thrilling encounters, excellent individual performances, lots of sixes and fours and obviously the Bollywood quotient in the team fan camps.
While there are certain things that are almost obvious to be expected in the tournament this year, there are a few things that might well be a new addition in the things to expect in IPL 2017.
Here we pick 5 such things to expect from the biggest T20 league in 2017:
1. New faces making it big
The IPL has always been about the domestic talents and that is why the tournament started with the motto of ‘where talent meets opportunity’. The tournament provides the ideal base for the young domestic talents to make it big in the tournament. However, when it comes to seizing the opportunity in the crunch times, the teams often look up to their overseas stars.
This is only fair to all the team managements since they shell out big money on the big guns. However, the teams need not worry this time. A plethora of young talent is on the roster and they are not shy from grabbing the opportunity with both hands. Players like T Natarajan, Mohammad Siraj, K Gowtham and many more are in line to lighten up the T20 season of IPL 2017.
2. Owners getting more involved
Over the last 9 editions of the tournament, the fans have seen the team owners get animated in short spells. Be it Preity Zinta for the Kings XI Punjab or be it Shah Rukh Khan for the Kolkata Knight Riders, the owners have managed to keep themselves engaged in the middle of the action. However, this year expect an unprecedented amount of involvement from the owners in the tournament. The addition of new teams Rising Pune Supergiant and Gujarat Lions has made the competition fierce yet again with the two sides trying to prove their best in the one solitary chance left with them.
Their owners have been very active in promoting the teams and coming out with bold quotes in the media. There was RPS owner Mr. Goenka who surprised everyone with his sudden announcement of replacing MS Dhoni with Steve Smith as captain. The Gujarat Lions owner, Keshav Bansal, has been very vocal too during the promotional stages of the tournament. Expect some football-like manager involvement in the tournament this year!
3. Bowler friendly tracks – turners?
The recently concluded long home season of Indian cricket has seen some brilliant display of spin bowling – particularly from the top two Test bowlers in the world (Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja). Yes, the format has definitely changed but that does not take anything away from the bowlers or the tracks that they bowled on. The tracks are expected to remain pretty much the same.
Barring the venues at Mumbai and Bengaluru that are expected to be batting belters, most of the other venues might well be bowling friendly tracks this season. With the summer heat beating down, the cracks would open up and if the curators opt to make it spin friendly, they have ample opportunity to give the bowlers an equal say in the tournament. You can surely expect the bowlers to rule to the roost in the IPL 2017.
4. Pride at stake for certain sides – last chance for some
The previous edition of the IPL saw the inclusion of Rising Pune Supergiant and Gujarat Lions. Both teams had contrasting fortunes in the tournament. The RPS side succumbed to the penultimate position in the points table by the end of the league stages and were definitely not an impressive unit on display. On the other hand, the Gujarat Lions had a whirlwind debut as they finished among the top 4 sides and made it to the playoffs.
IPL 2017 will be the last chance for these two franchises to express themselves and entertain the audiences. Among others, pride will be at stake for team like Kings XI Punjab. The KXIP unit, after having made it to the finals of 2014 edition, have been the bottom ranked team in the last two seasons. On similar lines, Delhi Daredevils would like to improve their show and rise from the average. Expect the low key sides to make it big this season.
5. More domestic players, more Indian flavors, more opening ceremonies!
Yes, you have read it right. The IPL 2017 will be having as many as 8 opening ceremonies. Each of the host venues will have an opening ceremony wherein they will showcase their cultures and traditions to the fans. The Indian flavor is bound to be on the rise in this season of the IPL. Among everything else, the players, of course, will be hogging the limelight. An unprecedented number of uncapped Indian players have made it to the IPL bus this season.
This surely means that the tournament will see the rise of new domestic champions. Players like Mohammad Siraj and Ishank Jaggi have been excellent performers in the domestic circuit. However, they never really had the opportunity to play at a stage as big as this. With an opportunity to play in front of packed houses, these domestic giants will look to leave an impact on the tournament for sure.
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