After the BCCI made a ‘killing’ in the media rights auction with a USD 6.2 billion contract, Punjab Kings co-owner Ness Wadia believes the IPL should now be split into two halves with a major increase in the number of matches.
The richest cricketing board, the BCCI, was able to raise Rs 48390 crore from the e-auction by dividing the media rights into four packages, roughly three times more than the previous cycle.
The IPL might have as many as 94 games in the next five years, and BCCI secretary Jay Shah has already stated that the event will have a dedicated two and a half months in the next ICC FTP cycle.
We Need To Have More Home Games Going Forward: Ness Wadia
In an interview with PTI, Wadia praised Shah and his team for implementing a creative media rights strategy but expressed the hope that the IPL would receive something that has been long overdue: “more home games and a bigger season”.
“IPL has taken cricket to the global level. The IPL has provided the spark cricket needed and made it a global sport. It will get even bigger.
Having said that, seven matches at home, it is way too less. It should be a minimum of 14. I really see a much longer season which is long overdue. If you can’t have a long season of four months why not look at two seasons, one in India and one in a different country every year. Indians are everywhere around the world. There is huge potential for having many more games,” said Wadia.
Asked about viewers’ fatigue due to a longer season, Wadia added, “The tournament is around for 15 years and the window should have become bigger many years ago. It is long overdue. And it will happen. For how long can you keep genie in the bottle.” Asked about the viewer fatigue factor with the IPL getting longer: “At some point, we will have to factor in that also. That is where the creativity comes and we can see how leagues are run around the world. We are long away from fatigue at the moment. We will cross the bridge when we get there.
The IPL is expected to have 84 games in 2024 and then gradually increase to 94 games.