Indian money to fuel Aussie version of IPL: Reports

Discussion in 'Members Corner' started by ajtr, Oct 29, 2010.

  1. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

    Oct 2, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Indian money to fuel Aussie version of IPL: Reports

    NEW DELHI: Indian corporate money appears set to make a dent into the Australian cricket market. Australian media reports said Indian investors are poised to grab a share of Australia's revamped Twenty20 competition in what is seen in the country as the biggest shake-up since Kerry Packer's World Series Cricket.

    Cricket Australia will decide on Friday whether to accept private equity from Indian and other overseas investors as part of the ownership of Australian teams.

    However, the Daily Telegraph said two of Australia's most powerful cricket states, New South Wales and Victoria, have already sold shares to "giant Indian corporations" for around Australian $60 million ($59 million). It said the outlays are in return for anticipated profits from an Indian Premier League-style eight-team tournament, mooted to start in Australia in January 2012.

    The Australian, which said CA would be counting on Indian millionaires and players to claim a financial windfall from the expanded competition, named Brisbane-based Adani Group and Jay Mehta, co-owner of Kolkata Knight Riders, as Indian corporates with possible interest in the league.

    According to the paper, there were rumours that Gautam Adani, the "10th-richest man in India with estimated personal wealth of $10 billion", was looking at investing in Queensland coal mines and even buying the port of Brisbane. An Australian businessman of Indian origin was quoted as saying that the sort of money the cricket teams were talking about between $5 million and $30m was "very cheap" for these billionaires. Adani was an unsuccessful bidder for an Indian Premier League franchise.

    NSW is also believed to have had discussions with billionaire Mehta about investing in the state's cricket.
    The CA feels that within three years, a window will be cleared in January free of international cricket to allow all Australian stars as well as two high-profile overseas players in each of the eight teams to play in the 'Big Bash'.
    The paper argued that the Big Bash should be sold into the Indian market, and the presence of Indian players would enhance its value.

    Cricket Australia, the paper said, showed it was looking at a long game when it insisted Doug Bollinger and Michael Hussey play for a privatized Indian franchise in the Champions League rather than prepare for the Indian Test series. "It was, without doubt, a demonstration of commitment by the local bosses to the Twenty20 franchise idea, with the hope that such largesse would be reciprocated should Australia need access to Indian players," it said.

    For CA, the new T20 series could even surpass late media mogul Packer's trailblazing World Series Cricket concept of the 1970s, which introduced day-night one-day cricket. "It's a moment as big, if not bigger, than the Kerry Packer moment when his role resulted in ODI cricket taking off and basically funding the development of Australian and world cricket for 25 or so years," CA spokesman Peter Young said.

    The Telegraph said Indian investors want a 49% share of a NSW cricket business entity, known as Blues Inc, for around $30 million (Aus). "The T20 franchises in Australia could eventually be worth $80 million each," an unnamed source told the newspaper. "One-day cricket is dying, the only Tests people care about are the Ashes and India, and everyone knows T20 is the future of the game."

    According to the newspapers, overseas stars from India, England, the West Indies and South Africa will be offered huge contracts to play in a tournament that will replace Australia's traditional One-day cricket over January and February.
    ACA backs private ownership

    Meanwhile, Australian Cricketers' Association has backed the idea of private overseas investment coming into the T20 league, saying it would not just bring in money but also raise the profile of the sport Down Under. "I don't know whether the offers on the table stack up, that is something that Cricket Australia is analysing. But if it does stack up, from our perspective, we think cricket should go for it," ACA chief Paul Marsh was quoted as saying by an agency.

    "The value and benefits that private ownership would bring to Australian cricket, do they outweigh the financial opportunity cost that cricket may be giving up by bringing in part owners, and the control that cricket may be giving up?" he said.

    "We have no issue with it our players play in the IPL (Indian Premier League) where the teams are privately owned. It's a different sort of landscape than what we have been used to, but it doesn't necessarily mean it's all bad. The T20 competition will also lure overseas stars to play for the Australian franchises in a tournament set to replace One-day matches on the January and February cricket calendar," he added.

    Read more: Indian money to fuel Aussie version of IPL: Reports - The Times of India

Share This Page