Pakistan’s decision to bar its cricketers from playing in the IPL has impacted teams like Jaipur, Kolkata and the Delhi Daredevils. Daredevils have already let the controversial Mohammad Asif go and the absence of Shoaib Malik is likely to be compensated by the arrival of new Aussie sensation David Warner.
“Only Umar Gul and Sohail Tanvir were the top performers and the team owners were really excited about them. But other than that, all the others were up for trade and there were no takers for them,” a team official said.
Lalit Modi said that the Pakistan pullout would not affect BCCI-PCB relations. “We regret this situation and we are going to miss the Pakistan players in the IPL. In the past, there were problems with Pakistani cricketers playing on Indian soil but we managed to handle the situation. Now, we can’t do much. Our relations with PCB will not get affected and this pullout can’t be linked to bilateral series.”
Out of 114 cricketers in the initial auction list, 43 players have been shortlisted finally. However, it remains to be seen how many will actually get traded as most of the teams don’t have more than two slots. Of course, teams like Jaipur and Kolkata would have the extra money to shop for a few players at the auction.
Talking about the upcoming edition, Modi sounded upbeat. “If last year we had 22 cameras covering a match, this year we will have 33 of them. Apart from that, we will have four sets of crew members covering the event,” he said.
Modi, however, admitted that the upcoming general elections would have an impact on IPL.
“It is indeed a difficult situation. The problem will be when polling or a counting date clashes with the date of the match in the respective city. This will have a big impact on us. So, we are making a tentative schedule and taking necessary steps to handle the issue,” he said.
He also said that an investor had shown interest in buying stakes in Bangalore Royal Challengers but did not take names.