New Delhi, December 27 (Reuters) – The Indian Premier League (IPL) is set to become a 10-team affair from 2022 after the Indian cricket board on Thursday approved a proposal to add two more franchises to the world’s richest Twenty20 competition.
The eight-team league, with an estimated brand value of $6.8 billion, drew record television and digital viewership this year despite being staged in the United Arab Emirates following the COVID-19 surge in India.
“We have received an in-principle approval to add two more teams after talking to all the stakeholders,” Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) treasurer Arun Singh Dhumal told Reuters after the AGM in Ahmedabad.
“Now the issue will be discussed in the IPL Governing Council – how and when to add the teams.”
Local media has reported in the past that Indian conglomerates Adani Group and RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group, which owned the now-defunct Pune franchise for two IPL seasons, have shown interest in buying new teams.
The board also discussed the possible inclusion of cricket in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics, something the game’s governing International Cricket Council (ICC) is very keen on, but did not specify its stance.
“That still needs to be discussed. We need some more clarity on this issue (from ICC),” Dhumal said.
Another vexed issue that came up at the meeting was securing tax exemptions, as demanded by the ICC from host nations, for the 2021 Twenty20 World Cup and the 50-over World Cup in 2023.
“We will have to talk to the government and secure the exemption,” said Dhumal.