The BCCI is planning to bring out a tender for a new Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise - or even two - as soon as the Diwali week gets over, which is in line with a policy that was planned out the previous year itself. The 2020 edition of the tournament concluded earlier this week on Tuesday (November 10) and was considered a success across the board, not least because the tournament was first postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic and then shifted to the UAE and played behind closed doors. (IPL 2020 ORANGE CAP | IPL 2020 PURPLE CAP)
Now a report in the Times of India (TOI) says that the BCCI’s plans on making the tournament bigger will likely begin sooner rather than later and that could mean a mega auction in the beginning of 2021.
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It was in November 2019 that the BCCI first began tentative plans of bringing in two new franchises to the IPL after the 2020 edition. However, the board then mooted plans to only bring one franchise in for the 2021 edition and the other would enter the tournament from the 2022 season onwards.
“The tender is most likely to come after Diwali, once a decision is taken in this regard. And regardless of whether it’s one franchise or two, if new teams come in then a mega auction cannot be avoided" sources told TOI.
The mega-auction process will be a bone of contention among franchises, mainly due to the short turnover time between the 2020 and 2021 editions of the tournament.
However, a report by The New Indian Express (NIE) has claimed the BCCI has informed participating franchises to soon gear-up for a player auction which could be held early in 2021 and also hinted at the inclusion of a ninth team.
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The ninth team in the IPL could be from Ahmedabad and the recently upgraded Sardar Patel Stadium at Motera will be their home ground, according to the report.
“The BCCI has told us to be prepared for an auction in a couple of months. Though it is not official, that they have asked us to be ready means they will go ahead as planned. Moreover, with a new team coming in, it makes sense to have an auction now rather than deferring it by a year,” a franchise official told NIE.
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