• Since the inception of the Indian Premier League a little over three years ago, Lalit Modi has run it like his personal fiefdom, carving out large chunks of the pie for family, friends and well-wishers. For the better part of two years, everyone -- the Board of Control for Cricket in India honchos, large sections of the media, even the public -- knew what was going on, but in the euphoria over the building of "the world's biggest sporting brand", they chose to turn a blind eye to behind-the-scenes shenanigans.

    And then Modi [acting, ironically, on the advice of the then BCCI president] chose to out the Shashi Tharoor involvement in the Kochi franchise, and all hell predictably broke loose. I've chronicled that event, and all that happened since, so exhaustively that there is little point in an extended iteration. Net net, the single biggest outcome was the universal demonization of Lalit Modi, who was depicted as the source for all ills in the IPL, and by extension Indian cricket. The

    Read More »from The IPL Fiasco: Battle Royale in the Offing
  • In the wake of the dramatic axing of the Rajasthan Royals and Kings’ XI Punjab from the Indian Premier League, various franchises have been vocalizing their anguish, none more openly than industrialist Vijay Mallya.

    Almost immediately after the news broke, the Royal Challengers, Bangalore, boss posted on his Twitter stream the following message:

    “Wonder if the franchisees are serious stakeholders whose investments and participation are respected, or are they slaves who only come and play."

    In this connection, two SMSes sent out by Board of Control for Cricket in India Secretary N Srinivasan, who is also co-owner of the Chennai Super Kings franchise, is startling.

    The first, sent from his cellphone to one particular franchise, reads:

    “As we have been saying. Please align yourself with us. Or everyone will get the same taste of the medicine we have given today to RR and Kxip. Owners should not think they are above the Bcci”

    The follow up message, sent to the same franchise, reads:

    “You

    Read More »from BCCI to Franchise: Shut up or Else!
  • It is a big moment. We are playing for the last time as a unit. We know some players will no longer be with us after the IPL auction. It is an emotional moment - MS Dhoni

    Indian Premier League champions - the deserving Chennai Super Kings lifted the Champions League Twenty20 trophy in Johannesburg. They clearly saved their best for the semi-finals and the finals to show who the 'King' is. Among the three IPL teams at the Champions League, Chennai with help from seniors like Fleming, Hayden, Muralitharan and Hussey continued their winning spree with Dhoni's luck getting along.

    Youngsters in the company of men grabbed almost all the prizes to be taken. Vijay took the Golden Bat for scoring most number of runs. Ashwin got the Golden Wickets for the most number of scalps and was also adjudged Man of the Series.

    I would also like to congratulate Warriors for making it to the finals and especially their skipper Davy Jacobs for his spirited leadership. The man of few and straight words went

    Read More »from ‘Kings’ Set For Bigger Battle

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