IPL is not here to save the sport, says Sunder Raman

There is no onus on the Indian Premier League (IPL) to take responsibility for the possible decline in more traditional forms of the game in the wake of the Twenty20 success, according to Sunder Raman, chief executive officer of the IPL.

Raman was reacting to a question from the audience after addressing a gathering organised over the weekend by the Indian mission for local and visiting captains of business and industry who had attended the Doing Business with India Conference.

Cricket is not in a position where its needs to be saved today – it’s in good health,” Raman said.

“People are watching and enjoying the game. It’s still a debatable point whether we need to grow the sport or whether we should take it to more countries and thereby strengthen the game.

“Those are two objectives of the sport which have been put forward in some form or the other.”

“I think that the International Cricket Council is doing all that they can in terms of the priority of these points that they have to focus on at this stage.

“So the IPL is not here to save the sport or anything like that. IPL believes that there is a way to fast-track and to revitalise this domestic circuit of cricket.”

Raman said the IPL was part of the preparatory stage for players to be ready to play at the international level for their countries.

“Whether it’s preparing them at the same level as Test cricket or not, it’s going to give them some level of exposure and develop their confidence.”

“You must remember that IPL’s focus is restricted to domestic cricket revitalising that. We believe we have a job to do there.

“The other elements that have been mentioned, such as the entertainment, are things that help to get more and new fans into the stadium and interested in the sport.”

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