The 16th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) concluded earlier this week which saw the MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings (CSK) being crowned as the champions for a record-equalling fifth time in the league’s history.
Like every other year, the just concluded season also witnessed packed stadiums and record-breaking numbers on streaming and it can be said that the cash-rich league once again showed no signs of slowing down.
However, in recent times, the players have found more options as several other T20 leagues have been launched globally. Despite such scenario, IPL chairman Arun Dhuman doesn’t see any other league as a threat to IPL and feels that the Indian league has no competition.
“We don’t see anyone else as our competition, there is none even close to IPL,” Dhumal told Reuters.
“Our best wishes to all the boards starting their own T20 leagues, but I don’t think any of them can be a threat to IPL,” he added.
In addition to the Big Bash League (Australia), The Hundred (England), Pakistan Super League and the Caribbean Premier League, two more T20 tournaments have been added to the already packed cricket calendar in SA20 (South Africa) and ILT20 (UAE).
JioCinema, IPL’s newest digital partner, has reported record-breaking numbers through the season including in the finale with a whopping 3.2 crores concurrent viewers at one point. Commenting on it, Dhumal said: “It (IPL) has been a phenomenal success, and largely because of the sheer competitiveness of this year’s tournament.”
“Most of the matches went down to the wire and there were plenty of last-over thrillers. We got a phenomenal response from the fans. Our viewership grew manifold and our broadcast and digital partners both are excited. Even the in-stadia experience of the fans has been phenomenal, and going forward it’s only going to get better,” he added.
The news agency also reported that the number of matches per season could be increased from 74 to 94 if a larger window is provided to conduct the event however, there are no plans to increase the number of participating teams as of now.