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CSK keen to own a team in the new South African T20 league

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(Photo Source: BCCI)

Falling in line with other major cricketing nations South Africa has also planned their own domestic Twenty20 league. The T20 Global Destination League is slated for November-December 2017. Indian Premier League (IPL) team Chennai Super Kings (CSK) that is serving a suspension has shown keen interest to invest and own a team in the new T20 league.

Cricket South Africa (CSA) has received an overwhelming response for ownership and more than 150 parties have expressed their desire to own a team. The move has been prompted by the fan base the CSK team has in South Africa that emerged when the team played there in 2009.

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“We have informed them about our interest. It’s the first step to take. However, we haven’t yet got the bidding documents. We had a very good fan following when the IPL happened in South Africa in 2009. But nothing has been finalized as of now and we will have a clear picture closer to the deadline (April 18) for submission of bids,” K George John, a director of Chennai Super Kings Cricket Limited (CSKCL) the company that owns the CSK franchise was quoted by TOI as saying.

While a majority of those who have shown interest are from South Africa to be precise 39% of them, the second best is 35% from India. CSK is one of the most consistent IPL teams having won the title twice and also the Champions League T20 they have a splendid fan base given the fact that they have MS Dhoni as their captain who enjoys unprecedented following right through the country.

The idea to buy another T20 team is to expand their reach and build a global brand out of CSK. “As of now we have only thought of expanding and building the brand globally,” John said.

This has a lot to do with their willingness to explore new markets and push up the financials and has no influence in any way with the fact that the franchise has been banned by the Supreme Court from participating in the IPL for 2 years, one of which has already been served. “We wanted to explore opportunities, see new markets, analyse and research the financial aspects.”

An IPL franchise that owns a team in a foreign league is Kolkata Knight Riders as Red Chillies Entertainment purchased a stake in the Caribbean Premier League team Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel and renamed it Trinbago Knight Riders.

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