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IPL 2022 promises to be bigger, better and more exciting than ever before

New Delhi : With the addition of two new teams Lucknow and Ahmedabad, the Indian Premier League (IPL) will now be a 10-team affair and the 2022 edition of the cash-rich league promises to be bigger, better and more exciting than ever before.The word ‘exciting’ naturally comes to everybody’s mind when someone talks about ‘new’ things in life or in general. Likewise, the two new franchises will completely change the dynamics of the IPL. The RPSG Group has picked Lucknow as their home base with a winning bid of whopping Rs 7,090 crore while Irelia Company Pte Ltd (CVC Capital Partners) opted for Ahmedabad with a bid of Rs 5,625 crore.With the addition of two teams, the organisers decided to conduct a mega auction in order to give equal opportunity to every team to pick players of their choice and build a strong side. Before that, all the eight existing franchises were given the opportunity to retain players.

With a total salary cap of Rs 90 crore available at the mega auction for each team, the eight franchises were eligible to retain up to 4 players with a maximum of 3 Indians, 2 overseas players and 2 uncapped Indians and they already have exercised their rights. On the other hand, the new franchises have been asked to retain a maximum of three players and they are busy with back-channel negotiations with star players.Meanwhile, Sanjiv Goenka’s RPSG group, which bought the Lucknow team, was immediately given a Letter of Intent by the BCCI and they have already announced their star-studded support staff. However, the CVC issue lingered after questions were raised over its alleged investment in betting companies outside India.The BCCI had consulted experts on the dispute surrounding CVC Capital’s acquisition of the Ahmedabad franchise. The board has received and adopted a report on the issue from Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan, a retired judge of the Supreme Court, who headed a three-member independent external panel. As per Cricbuzz report, the Radhakrishnan panel has cleared the American company’s participation in the league and an announcement is expected soon in the matter.Overall, things are looking sorted and an exciting season of T20 cricket awaits Indian cricket fans. A look into things which will make IPL 2022, bigger and better than ever before.

Mega Auction:

The IPL mega-auction will be a two-day affair, on February 12 and 13, and will be held in Bengaluru ahead of the 2022 season. It will not only decide the fate of players but the auction will also dictate how teams shape up going forward.It is often said that half of the battle in IPL is generally won on the auction day itself. The players which one franchise decides to pick clearly plays a major role in building the strength of the side. Almost five teams are also searching for their potential captains, so IPL 2022 is likely to be a high-octane affair.Notably, it could well be the last mega auction that the BCCI might conduct as the majority of participants, including the franchises, agree that the idea of having a big auction after every three years is no longer a great deal. Franchises are of the belief that the trend has clearly gone past its sell-by date, and are not in favour of losing their players whom they have nurtured over the years, in bunch.

New format:

As against 60 games and eight teams hitherto, the league, in its 15th edition, will have 10 teams and 74 games in all. Though, it’s not official yet but the BCCI has discussed internally the length of the season and it will be for over 60 days.Each team will have 14 league games with the current format of seven home and away games each retained, however, in all likelihood it will revert to the group system. IPL 2022 is likely to replicate the model used in the 2011 season, which also featured 10 teams, and had teams split into two groups.The new format will change things drastically for the franchises and it will present a new challenge, forcing them to adopt new game plans and ideas against their opponents.

IPL’s return to India:

The full season of 2020 and a half season of 2021 IPL were staged in UAE due to the Covid-19 situation in India. But, during his speech in Chennai, where CSK celebrated their fourth IPL win a few months ago, BCCI secretary Jay Shah had announced that IPL will be returning to India.However, the present Omicron threat has forced BCCI to think over their decision and the board is likely to hold a meeting with IPL team owners to discuss the alternate plans of conducting the 2022 season of the lucrative league.It is learnt that the option of going back to UAE, apparently, is off the drawing board. The organisers are also exploring the idea of holding the whole tournament just in Mumbai and Pune or in the Gujarat cities of Ahmedabad, Baroda and Rajkot if the Covid/Omicron situation worsens. IPL generally starts in April so the board will take a final based on the Covid-19 situation in the country at that time.

Rise of new stars:

‘Talent meets opportunity’ is the tagline of IPL and the cash-rich league has justified it over the years with some young prospects.Every IPL season throws up new trends, a subtle evolution of T20 cricket and most importantly new Indian talent. The likes of Devdutt Padikkal, Ravi Bishnoi, Yashwavi Jaiswal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Kartik Tyagi, Umran Malik and others have shown their skill and spark in the last couple of IPL seasons.The scouts of teams also must have kept a keen eye on the star performers of 2021-22 Vijay Hazare Trophy and the recently concluded U-19 Asia Cup as well. More often, talents found in these tournaments make big names for themselves through IPL and this season they are set to do the same.




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