All Of This Discussion, That The IPL Is A Money Making Machine, So It Is: Arun Dhumal > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - This whole talk that IPL is a money-making machine, so be it: Arun Dhumal

To make matters worse, BCCI's contract with Nike for the jersey sponsorship has come to an end at a time when the financial market is witnessing a dip.

To make matters worse, BCCI's contract with Nike for the jersey sponsorship has come to an end at a time when the financial market is witnessing a dip.

Much like the situation globally, there has been a loss of cricket and revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic in India as well. Even the Board of Control for Cricket in India, the richest cricket board, hasn't remained unaffected. The officials have been desperate to kickstart the big money-spinning Indian Premier League (IPL), which was scheduled to take place in the summer months, and make up for a good chunk of its financial losses but the situation has only become grim for them.

Barring the IPL, even as the rest of the cricket calendar has remained unaffected so far, cricket matches and the finances are expected to be hit with the number of COVID-19 positive cases and deaths in the country witnessing a spike. As a result, the future of both the IPL and the 2000-odd domestic matches' calendar remains uncertain. So do BCCI's international commitments - with the International Cricket Council, the Asian Cricket Council and Cricket Australia.

On the financial front, to make matters worse, BCCI's contract with Nike for the jersey sponsorship has come to an end at a time when the financial market is witnessing a dip.

In an interview with Cricbuzz, Arun Dhumal, BCCI treasurer, explains how the Indian cricket board is placed in the current situation and what the plans for the near future are.

EXCERPTS:

With the current commitments for T20 WC and Asia Cup, is there a window for the IPL?

No, if both these events happen, then there is no window

Will BCCI participate in the Asia Cup?

That is a call the Asian Cricket Council has to take, and for all the participating countries if whether travelling to play Asia Cup is safe. So once we are able to take feelers from all these countries, only then it will happen. As of now, international travel is not there, so we are not sure if we will be able to travel or not, or if it would be safe.

Given that the BCCI has stated that IPL will be a priority if the Asia Cup and World Cup doesn't happen, will BCCI look at the possibility of not playing some of the matches with Australia?

No, that is part of the FTP [Future Tours Programme]. There is no way we can think of not abiding by the FTP and organising the IPL. We are committed to taking care of all FTP. In case the World Cup doesn't happen only then we have the opportunity of staging the IPL.

Given India's corona climate, if a country like Australia that's better managed the crisis remains unsure of hosting a major tournament, how does BCCI retain the confidence of hosting IPL?

No, we have always reiterated that if the conditions are safe enough for the players to go for the tournament, only then will the BCCI take a call. We haven't announced any tournament. As of now, the official statement from the BCCI is that it is indefinitely postponed. The only statement of the BCCI is that we will explore the possibility and safety of our players will be the prime concern. If it is safe for our players to go, only then we will go. We have never said that we can compromise on the safety and health of our players.

The IPL will only happen if it is safe to play. What do you expect - for how long should the players be out of touch with the game? There has to be some cricket that has to resume. This whole talk that IPL is a money-making machine, so be it. Who takes that money? That money goes to the players, that money doesn't go to any office bearers. That money goes to the welfare of the nation, the travel and tourism industry, in terms of industries being revived, in terms of taxes being paid. So why opposition for the money? Money is paid to the players and all those people who are there to organise the tournament. Media has to change the stance and tell about the benefit of this tournament that is happening. If BCCI is paying thousands of crores in taxes, it is going in nation-building, it is not going to Mr. Sourav Ganguly or Mr. Jay Shah or myself. Right? So you should be happy if money is being made rather than money being spent on sports.

In case the money is being made, we should be happy about it because that money goes as taxes which helps the government come with welfare schemes. That money goes to the players who make their career with cricket. That money goes for the creation of infrastructure that will create jobs. You should be happy. If you want to be a global economy, you should be happy about making money through these tournaments. Why should we be sad about the money being made, right?

Has there been any discussion on the upcoming domestic season?

Entire cricket is affected because it won't be safe to resume cricket matches amidst the pandemic. In this how can we be sure when to resume and how to resume, how much we will be able to have? So once we get a clearer picture on when is the end of the pandemic or if we have found a vaccine so that it is proper to go out and play tournaments, accordingly we will work out a plan. Safety of our players if our topmost priority. We will not compromise on that. Any international or domestic tournament would be accounted for once we are sure of that.

The IPL GC meeting was supposed to be held this week to take a call on the Chinese sponsorship issue. What the update on that?

That will be taken up in the next IPL GC meeting, which will happen shortly.

With BCCI's contract with Nike coming to an end, is BCCI expecting lower bids for the next cycle of sponsorship?

We can't comment on that, let's see. We are talking to Nike about that, and if there's a need, we will go for a tender. We will see what best can be done.

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