New Delhi: While everyone is talking about how Chennai Super Kings’ old boys defied odds to win the 11th edition of the Indian Premier League at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday, former Delhi Daredevils skipper Gautam Gambhir in his column for Hindustan Times once again brought to the fore the influence that team owners and CEOs have in running the franchises in the cash-rich league. The former India opener went on to add that the only exception to this process is CSK as MS Dhoni has been given a free hand to run the show.
While he has so far remained quiet about his decision to step down as DD skipper in the middle of the season, the revelations from the batsman does give outsiders a view of what goes on behind the scenes in a tournament like the IPL where the owners are successful people from various walks of life. And the worst thing that spoils equations according to Gambhir is the ego that comes in with these people.
“A lot goes into the world of franchisee cricket. It is an expensive business – franchisee fees, salaries of players and support staff, travel, stay etc. There is one more head that no balance sheet shows: EGO. Most owners are successful outside the business of IPL. Just like cricketers, they hate to lose. But while cricketers can sportingly accept defeat against a better team, team owners are ruthless as they measure everything against Return on Investment (ROI).
“Given the circumstances, if the owners interfere in on-field matter, can you really blame them? But Chennai Super Kings are different. MS Dhoni is their de-facto cricketing boss. I have heard from Dhoni that no one from corporate side influences any cricketing calls. You can argue that it cuts both ways that since CSK have played record seven finals there is every reason for Dhoni to be given a free hand,” he wrote.
Earlier, he did make it clear that he didn’t play after stepping down as skipper because he wasn’t picked and there was no secret behind it and he said the reason the team failed was the lack of match-winning bowlers.
“A lot of people asked me why I didn’t play after stepping down from captaincy. My reply is simple: I would have played had I been picked. A lot of people also ask me where did we go wrong. It is simple again: injuries to key players like Rabada and Morris, inability to build the right team combination, certain players not clicking, the team not playing important moments well and also the inability to handle pressure are all reasons for our failure. I have always believed it is bowlers who win you games whatever be the format. I think we lacked there,” he wrote.
Daredevils finished last after the group stages with 10 points from 14 games with 5 wins and 9 losses.