16 years of Indian Premier League: How the league went on to become a rich global hit

Indian Premier League

On this day, 16 years ago, the Indian Premier League (IPL) was born, marking a significant milestone in the history of cricket. The IPL was established by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in 2007. The inception of the IPL was influenced by the Indian Cricket Team’s T20 World Cup triumph in 2007.

The inaugural IPL started on this very day (April 18) at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru. It was Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), now Royal Challengers Bengaluru up for the maiden battle.

The IPL witnessed a spectacular start that set the tone for what has become one of the most thrilling cricket leagues globally. Brendon McCullum, representing Kolkata Knight Riders, delivered an unforgettable performance in the very first match of the IPL. His explosive batting not only entertained the crowd but also established a high standard for the matches that followed.

IPL’s share to GDP and producing young talent

IPL, organized under the aegis of the BCCI, went on to become the most-watched Twenty20 tournament and the second-best-paying sporting league globally.

Over the years, the IPL has grown exponentially, both in terms of popularity and revenue. In 2022, the league’s brand value was estimated at ₹90,038 crore (US$11 billion). According to the BCCI, the 2015 IPL season contributed ₹1,150 crore (US$140 million) to India’s GDP.

The IPL has also been a platform for showcasing young talent. Many players have risen to prominence through their performances in the IPL. Virat Kohli, for instance, is the highest run-scorer in the history of the IPL, with 7,582 runs.

Controversies in the Indian Premier League

However, the journey of the IPL has not been without its share of controversies. Teams like Kochi Tuskers Kerala, Deccan Chargers, and Pune Warriors India are no longer a part of the tournament due to various reasons. Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals were suspended in 2015 & 2016 following a betting controversy.

Despite these challenges, IPL has continued to thrive. The current champions are the Chennai Super Kings, who won the 2023 season. The IPL has also inspired the establishment of other sports leagues in India in various states.

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