Tag Archives: Indian Premier League

Jayawardene, Zaheer elevated to Mumbai Indians’ global cricket operations

Five-time Indian Premeir League (IPL) champions Mumbai Indians (MI) on Wednesday announced that Mahela Jayawardene and Zaheer Khan are being elevated to new roles as part of the franchise’s central team for its growing global cricket footprint.

Jayawardene, the former Sri Lanka skipper who became the head coach of the franchise since 2017 and under whom MI won three IPL titles, has now been appointed as the Global Head of Performance while Zaheer, ex-India left-arm pacer who joined the side as Director of Cricket Operations in 2018, has been appointed as Global Head of Cricket Development.

The move comes at a time when the Reliance Industries, owners of Mumbai Indians, recently acquired franchises in UAE’s ILT20 and South Africa’s SA20 leagues. While the UAE franchise is named MI Emirates, the South Africa franchise is called MI Cape Town. Both leagues are scheduled to begin in January next year.

In his new role, Jayawardene will provide senior leadership of the group’s cricket operations worldwide, including overall strategic planning, the creation of an integrated global high-performance eco-system, as well as responsibility for each team’s coaching and support structures, working closely with the team head coaches to ensure synergies, a consistent brand of cricket, and implementation of best practices set by MI.

“It is an absolute honour for me to lead MI’s global cricket operations. Mrs. Ambani and Akash’s leadership and guidance have made MI the most valued global cricket franchise and I am very happy to see MI grow globally. I look forward to this new responsibility to build a strong cohesive global brand of cricket,” said Jayawardene in an official statement.

Zaheer’s new role will see him be responsible for player development, building on MI’s robust programme around talent identification and grooming and adopting the same across geographies, which has been core philosophy and has contributed to MI’s success in IPL. Each geography comes with its unique set of challenges and Zaheer’s elevated role will play an important role helping all three franchises across the globe.

“I am humbled to take on this new role and thank Mrs. Nita Ambani and Akash for their faith in me. MI has been home for me as a player and as a coaching team member, and now as we embark on a new journey, I look ahead to working closely with all the stakeholders in the global network to unearth new potential that can join the family,” added Zaheer.

“I’m happy to have Mahela and Zak as part of our global core team. Both have been an integral part of the MI family and embody the spirit of the cricket MI stands for. I’m confident that they would be able to ensure the same flows through all our teams globally and make a difference in the cricketing ecosystems across the globe,” said Akash M. Ambani, Chairman, Reliance Jio Infocomm.

ECB chair Richard Thompson keen to host IPL matches in England

England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has expressed its desire to stage the Indian Premier League (IPL) games in the country in the future as the lucrative domestic T20 tournament looks to expand, said a report in mirror.co.uk quoting the Telegraph.

Drawing comparison with the NBA and NFL, who play some of their games in the UK, new ECB chair Richard Thompson hoped that England could stage IPL matches in the future as well, with the cricket’s governing body in the country hoping to double attendances from two million to four million.

“The NBA and NFL come here, so why can’t we host the IPL? The IPL has grown its window by another three weeks and I don’t think it cannibalises other competitions because (many England) players are playing in it anyway,” Thompson was quoted as saying in the report.

“We have seen the value when India and Pakistan are playing over here during World Cups and Champions Trophies,” he added, indicating the ECB wants to cash in on the Asian fan base in the country.

Last year, the ECB had reportedly held talks with the BCCI and IPL officials about franchises playing games at The Oval and Lord’s and the report also said that the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, had supported the venture.

“Surrey are speaking to teams in India and colleagues in the BCCI and IPL,” Khan said.

“The first step will be friendlies and exhibition matches. We want to get them going, maybe even this year if we make progress as we are doing with the pandemic. It has to be Covid-safe, of course. We have to bang the drum for our city, and sport is one way to do this,” he added.

Surrey and the MCC, who own Lord’s, have said that hosting IPL matches would be great for the sport in the country. “We support the Mayor of London’s ambitions to bring the Indian Premier League to London and are keen to work with the administration to make this a reality,” they said.

“The incredible energy, diversity and passion of the crowds at both our venues during the Men’s ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 demonstrated London’s extraordinary potential as a home for global games. Following in the footsteps of the NFL and MLB by bringing one of the world’s largest leagues to the capital, would be a hugely exciting project for our city and the wider game in this country,” they added.

IPL got my career back on track, CPL can take it to next level: Obed McCoy

With 16 wickets in his last 10 T20Is since making headlines by playing a crucial role for IPL franchise Rajasthan Royals, left-arm pacer Obed McCoy is raring to go ahead of the 10th season of the Caribbean Premier League.

The 25-year-old has switched sides this season and will be featuring for the Barbados Royals, a team he also represented in the inaugural season of THE 6IXTY, which wrapped up on Sunday.

“It’s obviously a new franchise for me but I’ve settled well into the team because there are a lot of familiar faces in our camp. It’s like a continuation from the IPL itself, and I am glad that the franchise has again put their faith in me. I feel at home here and that helps me in approaching games with confidence,” expressed McCoy.

Having missed out on the IPL trophy earlier this year, the pacer from Kingstown has already set his eyes on the title. “We’re here to win the CPL and my plan will be to keep going out there and take wickets to get the team over the rope.”

The Barbados Royals will start their CPL campaign against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, who will be captained by the experienced Dwayne Bravo and boast of a strong line-up. However, McCoy says his teammates will be focusing on playing their respective roles. “With wickets in the Caribbean, you know that the majority will be spin tracks, so I think that will play a role. I think for batters it will be about getting in and making the most of it, while for the bowling team, the middle overs will be crucial. Having said that, we need to tick all the boxes and adjust to the conditions each time we go out there,” he said.

The Royals will also have new captain David Miller joining the squad later in the tournament, with Kyle Mayers serving as his deputy in his absence, and McCoy has shared his thoughts on what the fans can expect from the South African great. “It is something that is relatively new to him, but seeing him, I think it’s a job that fits him. He’s a really experienced player and I’m sure he’s always learning, which applies to captaincy as well. He’s been in exceptional form off late and we are hoping he can lead us from the front with passion and help the team in doing the best.”

It was Miller’s Gujarat Titans who defeated McCoy’s Rajasthan Royals in the IPL 2022 Final, and McCoy says he “will definitely have a chat about it, but he (Miller) was in great form and credit to him.”

An impressive IPL season, followed by decisive performances for the West Indies, has elevated McCoy’s stature as an international bowler, but the wily left-armer does not want to change anything. “Well, I don’t put pressure on myself. At the end of the day, it’s about trusting my abilities and executing. When I’m on a cricket field, I don’t think about the outside noise. I just let my skills do the talking. I don’t try to think too much about taking wickets, and my aim is to just contain and put pressure, it’s inevitable for the wickets to come after that.”

The biggest carnival in world cricket, the CPL has produced several players over the years, and McCoy is one of the many who have been scouted by teams around the world through his performances in the competition. Commenting on the importance of the league, he said, “CPL has been a great platform for young players and I’ve experienced that myself. When young players get to speak and experience an atmosphere which has got proven, international players, I think it gives them great insights and accelerates their growth.”

“You end up knowing how they think, what their routines are like, and pick up the good things. It’s about understanding what they need to do to get to the next level,” added McCoy.

He seems to be enjoying his cricket at the moment, but the past year hasn’t been easy for the Barbados Royals seamer. “At the start of the IPL, I was coming off an injury and was a bit devastated to be honest in terms of where my fitness had gone, but I knew that when I get down and actually get into the rhythm of things, I would actually start to gain back fitness and that helped. I knew it was challenging to be going into a big tournament with little to no match practice under my belt, but I just went into the game with confidence, and the fact that my role was very clear, made a lot of difference. I tried to stick to my strengths, and it turned out well.”

McCoy also added that working with one of the greatest bowlers, Lasith Malinga, benefited him. “With Malinga, he told me he also went through phases like that where you are just coming off an injury but must get into the thick of things quickly. He just advised me to bowl as much as possible in the nets, and I think that really helped in regaining my fitness and rhythm. I went from bowling about 30 balls, to bowling 60 balls a session, sometimes even more.”

With new goals in his sights, McCoy will be one of the key bowlers in the Barbados Royals’ line-up alongside Jason Holder and Oshane Thomas, and he is already relishing the opportunity. “I’m really excited for this season. I think those couple of months (IPL) really got my career back on track, and I just want to continue evolving as a player, understand the game better and just work my way up to the top as much as I can starting with helping my team win the CPL trophy,” McCoy signed off.

Chennai Super Kings registers Rs 32.12 crore profit for FY22

Chennai Super Kings Cricket Ltd, the company which owns the famous Chennai Super Kings (CSK) franchise in the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL), has closed last fiscal with a profit of Rs. 32.12 crore on a revenue of Rs 349.14 crore.

During the FY21, the company had earned a total income of Rs 253.69 crore and a net profit of Rs 40.26 crore.

As per the company’s annual report, the company’s total income went up as the CSK won the IPL title while the net profit came down owing to higher expenses. Notably, the 2021 IPL Season, which was held in India and was cancelled midway in 2021 due to Covid spread, was forcefully shifted to United Arab Emirates (UAE) later resulting in higher expenditure, the company said.

Last fiscal, Chennai Super Kings Cricket Ltd floated a wholly-owned subsidiary Superking Ventures Private Ltd (SVPL).

Significantly, CSK in one of the most successful teams in the IPL history after winning the trophy in 2010, 2011, 2018 and 2021.

Ponting & Pant have made Delhi Capitals an extremely professional franchise: Mandeep Singh

Popular for his powerful strokes and massive sixes, Mandeep Singh made his debut for India back in 2016 and the right-hand batsman has played for various franchises in the Indian Premier League (IPL) and has been an eminent player in the U-19 Indian Cricket Team.

Mandeep recently engaged with his fans in the ShareChat Audio Chatroom session- ‘CricChat powered by Parimatch’.

When discussing his career, Mandeep recalled his debut in the Indian team in 2016 and said: “I was playing in the IPL when I found out about my selection. My father always used to tell me, if I play cricket, I must play for India.”

He further added, “I met Mahi Bhai in the lift, one day prior to my debut and he asked me to be ready for the next day. Being on the ground was surreal.” He also stated that hitting sixes to Andre remains his greatest achievement to date.

Mandeep has been a part of various franchises such as the Delhi Capitals, Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).

Speaking about his time at the Delhi Capitals, he said, “Ricky Ponting and Rishabh Pant have made Delhi Capitals an extremely professional franchise. Ponting loves discipline and commitments and treats everyone equally”.

Commenting on how Kohli has brought a fitness culture to the Indian team, he said, “When I joined RCB, I was shocked to see Virat Kohli’s intensity towards training. His fitness has been instrumental in making him a consistent performer in T20 cricket. It has helped the ballers improve and has helped test cricket overall.” He further discussed how playing IPL gave him financial stability and confidence.

During the discussion, Singh also discussed KL Rahul’s journey. “During his U-19 days, KL Rahul began working on his game and preparing for test cricket.”

Mandeep spoke highly of Suryakumar Yadav with reference to the Asia Cup. He inspired the audience with stories from his early days while being candid with his fans. Manish Batavia, a well-known cricket presenter and commentator, moderated the discussion.

Didn’t make any change in my action, kept working hard on my bowling: Bhuvneshwar

India pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar has credited the hard work for turnaround in his form and refuted any claims of change in his bowling action.

Notably, the 32-year-old was in sublime form during the five-match T20I series against South Africa at home as he scalped six wickets from five games, averaging 14.17. He carried his form to the three-match T20I series against England as he showed how potent he can be in seaming conditions after picking four wickets from two games with a decent average of 6.25.

Bhuvneshwar will be a key member for India in the upcoming Asia Cup and the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia later this year.  When asked if he had made any changes in his bowling action in the last few months, the star India pacer replied: “Honestly, I didn’t make any change to my bowling (action). I just tried to bowl more, which brought my body back into rhythm. It brought back the confidence in me. Fitness is something if you improve, it helps you bowl better. But honestly I didn’t make any change in my bowling or worked on any particular aspect. Overall, I just bowled more whenever I got a chance,” said Bhuvi, who had a forgettable ICC T20 World Cup in the UAE last year.

“Of course when you are with the team, you practice, but I also kept working hard on my bowling at home and made an effort to keep myself in rhythm,” added Bhuvi in a video posted by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).

Bhuvneshwar also praised young pace bowler Arshdeep Singh, terming him as a tremendous potential. Notably, Arshdeep played a crucial role in India winning the opening T20I against the West Indies at Trinidad on July 29 by 68 runs, taking two wickets for 24 runs.

“The best part is when he (Arshdeep) bowls, he knows what exactly he wants, what field he has to set, how to bowl to a particular batter. It’s very rare that a new young bowler thinks like that. I suppose he had that maturity before he came into the India side,” opined Bhuvneshwar.

Bhuvi also rekoned that the four years Arshdeep spent with Indian Premier League (IPL) side Punjab Kings (PBKS) had given the maturity and confidence to play for Team India.

“He has been performing so consistently for the last two-three years at the top level. So, he knows what he wants to achieve in the game or in that point in time, which is a big thing. Meticulous planning is his biggest asset,” added Bhuvi.

Bhuvi also said the nature of white-ball cricket had changed drastically since the time he made his debut.

“When I started out with white-ball cricket, especially one-day cricket… that time the par score of 300-plus runs was not there. But, now, 300 runs is a par score. That is the biggest change I’ve witnessed. In T20 also if you make 180-190, teams know it is quite chaseable. These are the noticeable changes,” Bhuvi said.

“As a bowler, I am now more aware of what changes or variations I need against a particular batter, so those are the things that have improved. As the game goes further, more changes, more innovations will happen. The game has evolved big time,” he added.

Indian cricketer’s participation in other T20 leagues won’t diminish IPL, feels Gilchrist

Former Australian cricketer Adam Gilchrist has questioned on the absence of Indian players from other T20 leagues across the globe beside rekoning that their participation in other leagues of the world won’t diminish the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Notably, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) doesn’t allow any of its active players to participate in other global T20 leagues. Although, the Indian board has never made any public explanation on its stand however, multiple reasons, including commercial, are attributed for this.

“No Indian plays in any other T20 league, why? I feel it (Indian presence in other leagues) won’t diminish the IPL, it will only grow if they can play in Australia or South Africa,” fellt Gilchrist.

“I am not saying this in a provocative sense, is that not a fair question. If there is a second IPL window — I believe that is the proposal — that is going to start encroaching more into international cricket. That is going to further damage the domestic tournaments in those countries, but India still won’t help them build their market. It doesn’t seem like a two-way street,” he added.

The former Aussie wicketkeeper-batsman also said that he loved playing in the IPL during his time and doesn’t want to be reported as being anti-IPL but questioned why only some T20 tournaments are accessing every player in the world.

“I think the IPL is a wonderful addition to the cricketing landscape, I played six of them and I loved it. I don’t want to be reported as being anti-IPL. But why aren’t Indian players coming and playing in the Big Bash League, why only some leagues are accessing every player in the world,” he said.

“I understand the philosophy of the value the IPL gets is from its exclusivity (of Indian players) but is that balanced, even playing field for the health of the game globally? It is going to make a lot of money for the IPL, the franchise owners and certain players. Is it going to keep the game alive in other cricketing nations and that is the question for the ICC. We are talking dollars, aren’t we, as opposed to game development,” he added.

Meanwhile, when questioned about the possibility of David Warner picking UAE T20 league ahead of the Big Bash League (BBL), something he has spoken about lately, Gilchrist said he doesn’t want to single the attacking opener out and is sure there are other players who will be looking at the League in the Middle East.

“As regards the Warner situation, I don’t want to single him out. I am sure there are other players who will be looking at the UAE League. I think the issue is the bigger picture – the volume of cricket and various windows when there is no international cricket,” Gilchrist expressed.

“David may well argue that he is an Australian player and not a domestic player. So, when there are no Australian games, he is free to play wherever he wants. That may be his thought process,” he added.

Wouldn’t be surprised if IPL could expand to have two distinct seasons in a year: Ravi Shastri

Former India head coach Ravi Shastri has reckoned that he wouldn’t be surprised if the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) expands to having two distinct seasons in a year.

Shastri also fekt that the TV demand for more IPL matches could be met by adding a second season later in the year and by expanding the number of teams in the current form.

“I think you might have two (IPL) seasons. I wouldn’t be surprised at all. If bilateral cricket is reduced, you might well have a shorter format of the IPL in the latter half of the year, more like a World Cup format with a knockout that decides the winner. The full competition with 10 teams could go to 12 teams in the future with the schedule stretching from one-and-a-half to two months,” said Shastri on the latest episode of Vaughany and Tuffers Cricket Club Podcast.

Shastri meanwhile, also felt that IPL’s growth is good for the sport.

“All that is possible because it is driven by the money and supply and demand. The demand is big for that type of format. The IPL will be tempted to go in that direction. It’s great for the sport, great for the players, broadcasters and people who work around the teams. It’s (the IPL) an industry on its own now,” he reckoned.

Recently, the global cricketing schedule had come under huge debate last week after all-rounder Ben Stokes’ retired from ODI cricket citing “unsustainable” workload of playing all three formats of the game and speaking on it, Shastri felt that reducing bilateral T20Is is the apt solution to solve scheduling problem.

“I would be a little careful of the number of bilateral splits, especially in T20 cricket. There’s a lot of franchise cricket which can be encouraged, whichever country it’s in – India, West Indies, or Pakistan. You play less bilaterals and then you get together for the World Cups. So the emphasis on ICC World Cup events becomes paramount. Then people look forward to them,” he expressed.

Ricky Ponting joins BBL franchise Hobart Hurricanes as Head of Strategy

After some successful outing with Indian Premier League (IPL) side Delhi Capitals in the last five years, former Australia captain Ricky Ponting has now joined Big Bash League (BBL) Hobart Hurricanes as Head of Strategy for the upcoming Australian T20 domestic season.

Ponting, the highest run-scorer for Australia in Test cricket who had played eight matches for the Hurricanes in the first two editions of the BBL, has signed a three-year contract with the franchise.

His role as Head of Strategy will see Ponting having a say in the appointment of the Hurricanes’ new head coach and work on the match and list strategy with the then-appointed coach, the Hobart Hurricanes said in a release.

Former Australia men’s coach, Justin Langer, who is a close friend of Ponting’s, has previously been linked to the Hurricanes head coaching role, which has been vacant since Adam Griffith resigned at the end of BBL-11.

The 47-year-old Ponting has also previously held interim and specialist coaching roles with the Australian men’s cricket team.

He has previously said the time commitment of being a national team head coach has stopped him from considering coaching Australia full-time.

“The competition and the game itself have changed enormously from when I played for the Hurricanes back in BBL-01 and BBL-02, and I know so much more about the nuances of the T20 game now than I did then,” Ponting was quoted as saying by the Australian media on Thursday.

“I’m passionate about the progression of Tasmanian and Australian cricket across all forms of the game, so to be asked to take on such a critical role for the Hurricanes is really special. I’m looking forward to getting to work and securing the best coach for what we need then building a plan for the team to execute next season.

“With a few tweaks in a couple of key areas, I believe the Hurricanes have the foundations to win our first BBL trophy,” he was quoted as saying in the release by Hurricanes.

At the Hurricanes, Ponting will link up with some of Australia’s T20 rising stars in Tim David, Ben McDermott, Nathan Ellis, and Riley Meredith, said a report in cricket.com.au.

Ponting will officially begin his tenure with the Hurricanes effectively immediately.

IPL 2022: Dhoni hands over CSK captaincy to Jadeja

With just couple of days before kicking-off their Indian Premier League (IPL) title defense, defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) have made a big change to their leadership as ace all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja has been appointed as the new skipper.

Issuing a statement on Thursday, the four-time IPL champions said: “MS Dhoni has decided to hand over the leadership of Chennai Super Kings and picked Ravindra Jadeja to lead the team. Jadeja, who has been an integral part of Chennai Super Kings since 2012, will only be the third player to lead CSK. Dhoni will continue to represent Chennai Super Kings this season and beyond.”

Under Dhoni’s captaincy, the Yellow Brigade lifted the coveted trophy in the year 2010, 2011, 2018 and 2021 and also won the now abandoned Champions League T20 (CLT20) in 2010 and 2014.

The Jadeja-led CSK will begin their IPL 2022 campaign against four-time IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) on March 26 at the hostoric Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai before taking on newly-inducted Lucknow Supergiants (LSG) at the Brabourne Stadium on March 31.

Notably, the upcoming IPL season will begin on March 26 and will be played in a bio-secure environment at a single hub to avoid air travel, considered as a major threat for the spread of COVID-19 infection, thereby affecting the players and tournament.

While 55 matches are scheduled to be held in Mumbai, the remaining 15 games will be staged in Pune while the playoffs’ venues haven’t been decided yet. Is most likley that the Narendra Modi Stadium in Motera, Ahmedabad will stage the playoffs however, no official announcement has been made yet.

In the upcoming season, the 10 teams have been divided into two groups. While Group A comprises of Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders, Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Capitals and Lucknow Super Giants, Group B includes Chennai Super Kings, Sunrisers Hyderabad, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Punjab Kings and Gujarat Titans.

From this year onwards, the lucrative league will be a ten-team affair following the addition of the two new teams – Ahmedabad and Lucknow and will have a total of 74 games.