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BCCI to boost Women’s cricket in India, but an IPL practically impossible

The official also pointed out that even the highly successful Indian Premier League took two years of planning before its execution.

India women
Sushma Verma clicks a victory selfie with her teammates. (Photo Source: Twitter)

After completing a fairytale journey that was the ICC Women’s World Cup the future looks bright for the Indian Women’s team. Intending to take Women’s cricket in India to a different level altogether, skipper Mithali Raj stated that its high time the board comes up with a tournament equivalent to the Indian Premier League (IPL) for the girls too.

While cricketing legends and pundits all over the world have expressed their views on the statement, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) thinks that it will be practically very tough to pull off such a league for women right now.

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What the BCCI had to say:

According to a BCCI official who spoke to Cricketnext, the board is ready to stand behind Women’s cricket in the country and provide it with top class infrastructure and facilities which will see the rise of it. Having said that, he also said that a lucrative t20 league like the Indian Premier League for the women right now will be a mammoth task considering the financial instability inside the board at present.

“There is no denying the fact that the women cricketers have made us proud. They deserve all the accolades and definitely this is the time to promote the game in the country and help create a solid foundation for the women’s game to go from strength to strength. But to think of a women’s IPL would be a little far-fetched as it is not financially feasible at present. Also, the current unrest within the BCCI as the board is trying its best to implement the proposals of the Lodha panel at the earliest means that the women’s IPL needs to wait at present.” said the official.

“There have been a few proposals in the past as well. Current treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry had in fact presented a similar model some time back and it is not like that the BCCI isn’t looking at the possibility. But realistically, it is important to work on the grassroots level and improve the supply line of women cricketers to back the good work done by the likes of Mithali, Jhulan Goswami, Harmanpreet Kaur among others,” he added.

According to another official, problems regarding the coverage and broadcast of something the Women’s IPL should also be taken into concern. He gave the example of the Champions League T20 which has now been defunct.

“Women’s cricket has got good coverage this time round. But there needs to be more international and domestic games that need to be telecast before going for something revolutionary like having a T20 league. One needs to realise that the CLT20 couldn’t be sustained after some time as there weren’t enough viewers keen to watch the top T20 domestic teams from across the globe play each other. A lot of planning needs to go into the whole process,” he said.

The official also pointed out that even the highly successful Indian Premier League took two years of planning before its execution. He also said that the idea of a league similar to the IPL first arose in the year of 1995 which was too early for something of that sort.

“If you realise, the league wasn’t created overnight. It took two years of planning before it could be launched. Also, if you look at it, the idea of the IPL first came in the form of a 50-over league back in 1995. But then, it was too early and the format wasn’t suited to having the league and the BCCI had to wait till 2008 to have the first edition of the IPL. These things take time and cannot happen overnight. To be fair, even the men’s Ranji Trophy games fail to attract crowds, so the steps need to be taken carefully.” concluded the official.

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