Bengaluru team set to rejoin Karnataka Premier League

Bengaluru team set to rejoin Karnataka Premier League

KSCA President, Sanjay Desai, said that this year's tournament will be a great opportunity for the state's aspiring cricketers to come under the radar of Indian Premier League (IPL) teams.

Bellary Tuskers KPL
Bellary Tuskers. (Photo Source: KPL)

A franchise from the state capital is set to return ahead of the sixth edition of the Karnataka Premier League (KPL). Kalyani Bengaluru team will be owned by Kalyani Motors, one of the city’s leading car dealers. A team from Bengaluru had participated in the first two years of the regional tournament.

Six other teams – Bijapur Bulls, Belagavi Panthers, Bellary Tuskers, Hubli Tigers, Mysuru Warriors and Namma Shivamogga – have renewed their franchise rights for the next five years. But the Karun Nair-led Mangalore United and actor Kiccha Sudeep-led Rockstars will not be part of the T20 tournament this year.

Before the tournament kick-starts on September 1, a fresh player auction will be held on August 6. The season opener is scheduled to take place at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium before moving to Mysuru and Hubbali. The full schedule will, however, be chalked out after taking into account the date for the India-Australia One-Day International scheduled to be held in Bengaluru in September.

Increase in fan-following

Previously, KPL matches in Bengaluru were poorly attended. However, matches in Hubballi and Mysuru have seen fans turn up in good numbers. But KSCA spokesperson Vinay Mruthyunjaya hoped Bengaluru too would bring in the followers this year.

“We will be having a lot of initiatives to bring fans. Tickets will be very very modestly priced. We are also planning to invite a lot of school children. We will do our best,” he was quoted by Sportstar.

Stricter rules, this time

KSCA President, Sanjay Desai, said that this year’s tournament will be a great opportunity for the state’s aspiring cricketers to come under the radar of Indian Premier League (IPL) teams ahead of the mega IPL auction in 2018. Desai also warned of the zero tolerance of player misdemeanours of any kind. In 2014, a KPL player had come under the scanner of the BCCI Anti-Corruption and Security Unit.

“We are preparing cricketers for national duty. The rules will be stricter than ever. The dug-outs, player areas will be strictly monitored. We will be taking the assistance of BCCI and will be conducting workshops, seminars to educate players,” he concluded.