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Franchises to be consulted for change in IPL match timings

The IPL governing council has decided to table the proposal during the pre-auction workshop.

IPL Trophy 2018 | CricTracker
IPL trophy. (Photo Source: Twitter)

With Indian Premier League (IPL) 2018, just a few months away, the governing council has already started with its penultimate preparations. And in a recent development, it’s now being speculated that a proposal to change the timings of matches for the upcoming edition will be put forth.

It was reported that the board along with the broadcaster Star India want to alter the timings and that would involve an overlap of games on days with double-headers. However, the decision to overlap double-headers has now resulted in the franchises expressing their apprehension. As a result, the IPL governing council has decided to table the proposal during the pre-auction workshop of all the franchise representatives on Friday.

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The IPL meeting conventionally takes place with all franchise officials, primarily to discuss the flow of the auction and to clear doubts of the franchises with regards to the auction 2018. But, this time around IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla’s key agenda will be to convince the franchises about the overlapping.

Unlike the first ten seasons, where the evening games started at 8 pm, and the afternoon games used to commence at 4 pm, the governing council is planning on scheduling the evening games at 7 pm and starting the early game of a doubleheader at 5:30 pm.

It is understood that the proposal was mooted after consultations with the new broadcaster, who stressed on an overlap to increase prime-time viewership across its television and digital platforms.

The new scheduling can lead to loss of revenues

Not just the franchises, but even a section in the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is averse to the idea of overlapping matches, fearing it could lead to a reduction in central sponsorship revenue. If implemented, the franchises fear it could result in loss of revenues and eyeballs for all the teams.

A franchise official on the basis of anonymity was quoted by sportstarlive as saying, “The sponsorship deals for all the logos on our jersey are primarily based on the estimated TV viewership for the whole duration of the match. An overlap would into that aspect in a big way, especially since the double-headers are slotted over weekends and public holidays.”

He added, “I hope the franchises unite on this front on Friday and the BCCI takes our opinion into consideration before it makes up its mind.”

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