When the IPL began in 2008, it helped add a new word to India’s vocabulary: Sportainment. Its success paved way for the world T20 league boom across the sporting world. But for India, it began a journey towards being a sporting nation. It created mass hysteria due to its strategies that involved the appointment of regional brand ambassadors and promotion of each franchise in the spirit of “My team, My city”. It called for audiences nationwide who cheered for their respective cities and in the process managed to attract female fans as well. People started going to stadiums to watch the tournament and the competition heightened each year to see which city/region would win the cup.
In addition to fans, the IPL also brought an exponential growth to cricket in terms of revenue. The players and technical support staff were the biggest gainers, especially overseas. Thirdly, innovation with rising of technology used in sports has also been a result of the introduction of the Indian Premier League. While some may say it is unnecessary, it has changed the way IPL is perceived. The Hawk-Eye, Zing Wicket System, Umpire Cam, and Super Slo-Mo are proof enough that the IPL is leaving no stone unturned to provide its audience with the best quality of cricket. The new generation of cricket crazed kids, lured by the technical aspect, is another good reason for the IPL to constantly innovate.
While it is recklessly bold to state that the IPL will help aspiring players attain legendary status, the tournament has indeed completely changed the way T20 is perceived in Indian cricket. Of course, not denying the fact that more possibilities have opened up for players who were once invisible. Players now earn double of what they used to earlier.
T20 has gone from struggling for an identity to becoming the epitome of entertainment. From cheerleaders to Bollywood stars, the Indian Premier League took T20 cricket and made it something marketable. Not to mention international cricket players in each team, adding not just strength, but also ethnicity. It’s something that has caught on all around the world. Players like Sachin, Dhoni, Kohli, Raina and other popular players have only doubled the audience.
The current teams in the Indian Premier league include Chennai Super Kings, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Rajasthan Royals, Sunrisers Hyderabad, Delhi Daredevils, Kolkata Knight Riders, Kings XI Punjab and Mumbai Indians.