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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Leagues of India:The Forgotten One

With the Indian Super league(ISL) creating a lot of buzz around and with the Champions Tennis League(CTL) kicking off and soon to be followed by the star studded ITPL,India is slowly turning towards other sports apart from the Gentleman's Game Cricket.Cricket is almost like a religion in India,with over 1.5 billion people blindly following it .Once consider to be world power and with multiple Olympic Gold under its kitty,Hockey,considered to be India's National Sport lays in dismay.Call it Indian Sports ministries negligence,uninterested media or the cash strapped boards,no sports other than Cricket is been able to have a strong foothold in India.But in recent times with the introduction of various league be it the likes Pro Kabbaddi League,Indian Badminton League or Indian Hockey League and Indian Super League,Indian Sports is witnessing a Wind of Change.These league are not only able to gel with Indian Sports enthusiasts but also attract many sponsors,broadcasters and not the mention the Glamor which they had been deprived off since ages.The success of these leagues is largely credited to the Indian Premier League(IPL) as it is said to be the trend setter of this field and the rest simply followed it .But for one who has closely followed the IPL from its early days definitely knows how it came into existence.IPL,now consider to be one of the top sporting brand and is competing with the likes of NBA and EPL(two of the world's most popular league) only came to formation as an attempt to counter another emerging cricket league in India.The Launch of Indian Cricket League(ICL) in 2007 was the sole reason behind the Lalit Modi(One must feel pity for this guy) led and BCCI backed IPL,launched in 2008.The Essel Group(promoter of ZEE Telefilms) led league,the first of its kind in India ,was focussed on creating a pool of talented young players and set up academy all around the country.Without the back up of the BCCI,The ICC(ruled by the BCCI and its riches to an extent) also ruled against the support of the league which was focused for the development of the game.Though ICL found support among few state governments and also some celebrity too came forward,it lasted only for 2 seasons and in 2009,the league was gulped down into the darkness of time.
The success of IPL is no joke and within 6-7 years it has receive humongous fame and became one of the most talked annual sporting event in the world.But if it is taken into account,ICL the league which is now lost deep into the shadows of time was the only reason behind IPL and can simply be called the founding stone of the league culture in India.