The 2009 IPL 20/20 Tournament runs from April 18th to the final on May 20th. Channel 10 has an exclusive five-year Australian TV deal to broadcast the Indian Premier League (IPL) which consists of eight teams competing in action-packed Twenty20 matches. All IPL matches will be broadcast on Network 10’s ONE HD & SD Digital TV Sports Channels
Channel 10 will show almost all the IPL cricket matches live broadcasting at either 820pm or midnight (Australian Eastern Standard Time) depending on whether they are Day or Day/Night matches
Fans who have become accustomed to Twenty20 matches lasting 3 hours are in for a surprise during the second season of the IPL – they will now last 3 hours 15min. Part of the appeal of the shortest form of the game is the non-stop action but IPL games will now take longer.
The IPL are planning to market the added time as an ‘innovation’ by calling it a tactical ‘time out’ but the fact that each innings will now come to a halt for seven-and-a-half minutes after exactly 10 overs makes it neither tactical nor, indeed, practical.
The seven-and-a-half minute break will see the stadium crowd entertained by a live band while television audiences will watch three, separate two-and-a-half minute segments, two of which will be sold commercially. The third will show the teams taking drinks and discussing ‘tactics’ to add some validity to the argument for the ‘time out.’
All eight IPL franchises will play at least half their matches in Durban, Cape Town and Centurion, where they hope to have significant crowd support from the sizeable Indian-origin population
The opening double-header in Cape Town on April 18 – Mumbai Indians v Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals v Bangalore Royal Challengers – will feature at least nine South African players, including Graeme Smith, the South Africa captain, in a calculated attempt to spark local interest in what is essentially an Indian domestic event.
The opening day will also showcase two England stars who will make their IPL debuts, Kevin Pietersen, who was bought by Bangalore for US$ 1.55 million, and Andrew Flintoff, who was signed for the same amount by Chennai.
Kingsmead in Durban, which has a sizeable Indian-origin population, was allocated 16 matches, the highest among the eight venues, while Supersport Park in Centurion will host 12 games. The Wanderers and Newlands will stage eight matches each, while St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth and Buffalo Park in East London were given seven and three matches respectively. Two matches each were handed to the Outsurance Oval in Bloemfontein and three to the De Beers Oval in Kimberley.
Which team are you following and what does everyone think of the IPL as a tournament?