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Women's IPL fetches Rs 4,669 crore in bidding; Adani, Indiawin top bidders
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Women's IPL auction attracts Rs 4,670 cr in winning bids; Adani tops list

Women's Premier League breaks the records of inaugural men's IPL in 2008; now 2nd most lucrative cricket league, say experts

Topics
Indian Premier League | IPL | Women cricket India

Viveat Susan Pinto  |  Mumbai 



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The auction for five teams in the women’s Indian Premier League, now called the Women’s Premier League (WPL), concluded on Wednesday, with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) walking home with nearly Rs 4,670 crore, beating estimates of Rs 4,000 crore that experts suggested before the bets. The auction of teams was for a 10-year period (2023-32).

The Adani group entered the Indian cricketing arena with the highest bid of Rs 1,289 crore for the Ahmedabad franchise, followed by the Reliance-backed Indiawin Sports, which bought the Mumbai franchise for Rs 912.99 crore. The other three winners were Royal Challengers Sports for Bengaluru at Rs 901 crore, JSW GMR Cricket for Delhi at Rs 810 crore, and Capri Global for Lucknow at Rs 757 crore.

The combined media rights value (Rs 951 crore) and team auction bids (Rs 4,669.99 crore) give BCCI nearly Rs 5,621 crore in earnings, which some experts say is second only to the men’s .

“India is the home for cricket enjoying both high viewership and commercial interest. We saw that with the media rights auction for the men’s last year, which attracted bids to the tune of Rs 48,390 crore. While the women’s edition will grow over time, earnings of Rs 5,621 crore from the sale of media rights and team auctions in the augural year of WPL is a good start. There is no other women’s league in the world that comes close to this,” said Jigar Rambhia, chief operating officer of Mumbai-based sports start-up Sporjo.

BCCI Secretary Jay Shah tweeted on Wednesday that the WPL auction broke records of the inaugural men’s in 2008. At that time, Ayaz Memon, an expert on cricket and sports affairs, said, the auction for eight men’s IPL teams had fetched BCCI around Rs 2,894 crore. The Mumbai Indians franchise, he said, was the most expensive franchise at around Rs 446 crore.

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“That was 15 years ago, when the IPL as a concept was nascent,” Memon said. “The women’s edition has the advantage of the success that the IPL as a sporting property has enjoyed over the years. Four of the winning bidders in the women’s edition have shelled out amounts in the region of Rs 1,000 crore, with one surpassing that mark. This is a positive. Clearly, the winners see value in the women’s league,” he said.

In a statement, BCCI President Roger Binny said that the WPL will give players from India and abroad a chance to learn and grow together. “It will pave the way for the development of women’s cricket at the grassroots level with the inclusion of more women cricketers,” he said.

Nita Ambani, co-owner of Mumbai Indians, said: “India's women cricketers have always made the nation proud in the global sporting arena. This new Women's League will once again shine a global spotlight on the talent, power, and potential of our girls.”

BCCI, according to the tender document for the team auction, has provided WPL franchisees with a lucrative 80-20 revenue share scheme for the first five years. This will gradually change to 60-40 over the next five years, from 2027 to 2032. However, from 2033, the franchisees and the BCCI will share the profits equally.


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First Published: Wed, January 25 2023. 15:58 IST