The IPL Has Gone AWOL

It appears the gamble to take the IPL (Indian Premier League) out of its own country has resulted in the tournament not delivering as the inaugural tournament had done on so many levels.

I am a very passionate Cricket fan but this unfortunate happening (poor security guarantees in India due to elections at same time as proposed tournament dates required the tournament to be moved to another country) has resulted in the tournament falling flat on its face.

This is not the fault of the South African people, neither is this the fault of CSA (Cricket South Africa) it’s purely proven that a tournament has to be staged in the country of its origin to succeed. Let this be a lesson to the English Premier League and its proposed 39th game.

The tournament lacks the excitement, the carnival atmosphere created in India and the grounds have proven to be half full or half empty to the pessimistic amongst us. I believe Lalit Modi, chairman and commissioner of the IPL, will feel satisfied the tournament has gone ahead but he has to be disappointed with its impact thus far.

The time given to get this tournament up and running has obviously had an impact on the sale of tickets, the enthusiasm of South African based cricket fans to be able to attend the matches and the want to view these matches on what are poor wickets.

The participation of England’s premier players has proven to be a major flop for the tournament, with several not playing and some of those not performing to the standards they have set, I exempt Ravi Bopara and Dimi Mascarenhas from this, though Dimi participated very little at last year’s inaugural tournament.

The argument will continue as to move sports from their homeland to create commercial and financial opportunities but this has to have settled the debate. We could argue given more time the tournament could be more of a success, I very much doubt this.

Oh and my final word on this….drop the DLF maximum term you have given to the shot which results in a 6. It’s a 6, simple as that, a 6, not a sponsorship exercise. What next that instead of Monty Panesars’ many LBW (Leg Before Wicket) appeals, they’ll be known as an FCUK appeal? Discuss.

Its cup final time of the year and this Monday 4th May whilst most will be enjoying the bank holiday sun (hopefully), the Ladies F.A. Cup Final will be taking place at Pride Park, Derby between Arsenal Ladies and Sunderland Ladies, kick-off 1pm.

This is a classic David versus Goliath clash. Arsenal Ladies are the 9 time cup winners, 10 times league champions and 2007 UEFA Cup winners.

Compare this to Sunderland Ladies who have been in existence only 8 years and have flirted with promotion and relegation they currently play in the Northern League, one division below the National League, of which Arsenal are Champions of the last 5 years. This season so far they have only lost 5 games and beat National League Chelsea 3-0 in the semi-final.

This all plays towards a very interesting final and if you can I ask you to watch this match, which is live on ITV1. My hope is Sunderland isn’t embarrassed at this level but my gut feeling is an easy Arsenal victory.

Good luck ladies.

Cheers for Reading

Gaffers

P.s. Congratulations to Stephen Hendry for hitting a 147 break at the World Snooker Championships at The Crucible in Sheffield earlier this week. It is his 2nd at the crucible which has only seen 9 in its history. Have a look at his break, should you get chance http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/other_sports/snooker/8022722.stm

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