I don't see the IPL's status threatened by other leagues: Gaurav Kalra

Updated: April 5, 2013, 5:58 PM IST
I don't see the IPL's status threatened by other leagues: Gaurav Kalra

Can the IPL season six sustain public interest over the next four to six weeks? CNN-IBN's sports editor Gaurav Kalra joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on the issue.

Q. The advertising of IPL has been criticised by everyone.Too much glamour quotient,How is it helping cricket. Mandeep singh/Bisla who did well last yr are back without any progress. Asked by: googly

A. Personally, I do not enjoy the coverage of the host broadcaster...it is too filmy, too heavy on the entertainment quotient...cricket is the star of this entire concept and that gets forgotten...but there isn't a lot we can do about it.

Q. With so many cricket leagues in action now..like SRPL, BPL, big bash..PPL, will IPL maintain its brand among them in long run? Asked by: Raj

A. I think the IPL will enjoy its status as long as the money on offer remains as high it is...especially for the marquee players- they do enjoy coming here and the time of the IPL works for players from most countries as they are in the off season...so for the near future I don't see the IPL's status under threat in comparison to other leagues.

Q. Since the advent of IPL, many cricket fans are complaining about excessive cricket (especially T20) being played these days and are beginning to lose their interest in cricket. Do you believe that number of IPL matches should be reduced considerably by getting rid of home and away format? Asked by: Bhumish Khudkhudia

A. I had written a piece a couple of years ago asking for the IPL to be re-formatted...I believe it should be divided into two groups (with 9 teams now, that is slightly difficult) and those groups should be divided regionally...top two teams from both groups make semis...i think there are way too many games played, just makes it meaningless after a point...I also think if its a league would prefer the team with most points to win, not qualify for the knockouts...should reward consistency.

Q. Interest of the people is getting lower towards IPL..it shows in less people turnout in stadiums..less adds..do you think IPL will be able to service in the future as football leagues had done? Asked by: Rohit

A. I believe the sheer number of people who watch the IPL will keep the interest level pretty high...last year the ratings dropped but the number of people watching increased! think the comparison with football leagues doesn't really hold true- they last over a much longer period- IPL basically has to fit in the middle of a clogged international calendar.

Q. This tournament appears to tilt towards N srinivasan/Dhoni do you agree? Asked by: googly

A. For all the criticism CSK get, and some of it very fair, they do have to be complimented for how well the team runs...the owner seems to keep his distance, the coaching staff doesn't change all the time, they are a quiet, no frills, primarily focused on cricket bunch.

Q. Will IPL develop into a full fledged county season like affair. Should they look at IPL like that? Asked by: Narayan

A. I like the dynamic of the IPL as it stands...players come and go..teams have to rework strategies, fit guys into different roles..and its already 7 weeks long, not sure it can get any longer...would prefer it shorter actually!

Q. Will the 4 overseas player clause go away? If say increased to 5, then interest in the IPL may increase. This may help improve interest in the matches. Asked by: Narayan

A. You know this is an idea i have warmed up to...there's a lot of talk that the IPL is an 'Indian' league..but with 9 teams, you need 63 Indian players just to make 11s plus more for the squad...don't think there are so many quality T20 players in India...and its a criminal waste to see high class foreign players sitting on the bench..i think 5 foreign players per XI will definitely make the games better.

Q. Is IPL really drawing cricket-wallas to stadiums or it's just chill-chill time for friends and families? Asked by: satyendra

A. There's nothing wrong with a bit of both don't you think? Its a day out with the family- go have some fun and be back in time for bed!

Q. What does 'success' in the context define? Money or Game or entertainment? Asked by: Kelly

A. I am of the view that the cricket on show should be the star...unfortunately a lot of the entertainment seems to be pushed down our throats...sometimes the cricket isn't of great quality but at other times its compelling..my view is that there will be a tipping point soon when the cricket will have to be 'positioned' as the attraction.

Q. Do you think ipl6 has the same kind of passion and interest as that of IPL-1. Would it be better if the league is played alternate years. Asked by: Jayanth

A. No, I think the league should be played annually...interest dips and rises, that's fine...I just believe as I answered in an earlier question that the tournament needs to be shorter.

Q. Money will flow since it helps the products/services but cricket suffers. Asked by: googly

A. Not sure if that is a question or a comment mate!

Q. Won't the interest in the IPL depend on how the "lesser" teams like Punjab, Hyderabad and Pune play against the stronger ones? Asked by: Narayan

A. Everyone enjoys a good 'underdog' story...the Rajasthan royals run in the first year was one...and Deccan in the second after finishing last in the first...so one hopes this season provides that as well.

Q. Pitches in Kolkata and Chennai help spinners in IPL and see more scores 130-140 range in IPL do you think pitches should be like in Bangalore and Mumbai kind of wicket where their is bounce and they are good scoring games? Asked by: Amit Bhilwade

A. Think the BCCI this time has taken control of pitch preparation..but the difference in conditions is not such a bad thing...it offers different challenges at different venues...and even a T20 game which can be accused of 'sameness' sometimes can throw up different types of games.

Q. Is there any need to spend huge amounts of money in organising dull IPL opening or closing ceremonies every year? Also what can be done to increase the fan interest in T20 Champions League? Asked by: Bhumish Khudkhudia

A. The opening ceremony wasn't great...I agree, it does seem like a pointless exercise to do such a lavish one...but I think the organisers are very big on projecting an entertaining 'fun' concept..as for the champions league, its a noble thought...but frankly, I am not sure if it will ever be a blockbuster.

Q. In my view TV viewers for IPL is decreasing by each session. Do you Agree? Asked by: Kuriakose

A. I am told the number of people who watched the IPL last year actually went up! but the ratings dropped- sounds complicated but in the world of TV ratings, this kind of number crunching is standard!

Q. I feel Gambhir is very aggressive while playing in IPL.But not the same while playing for INDIA. Do you agree? Asked by: Venkatesh

A. Not at all..he is completely devoted to the idea of playing cricket..a lean patch can happen to all players and he has paid for it by being dropped...but he is a very passionate player and i am convinced he has a long future ahead in international cricket yet.

Q. Can you tell us how many franchises have been able to generate interest for their respective teams in their respective cities. For eg : KKR & Kolkata. Asked by: satyendra

A. I think there is loyalty in most cities now...some more than others..a lot of people from Chennai, Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore etc feel great loyalty towards their team...I believe largely this city based franchise concept has created a connect.

Q. Do you think KKR can repeat their 2012 feat? Do they have the players who can win the day for them? Asked by: Biplab Bose

A. Yes they are certainly among the favourites.

First Published: April 5, 2013, 5:58 PM IST

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