The sting operation conducted by India TV brings to the fore that all is not clean in Indian cricket. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) were quick to suspend the five players who revealed the dark side of the IPL, but the cricket body’s system encourages acts of hanky-panky where players can be bought by other teams through under-the-table dealing.
The Indian Premier League is a far cry as compared to the English Premier League football where details of the financial side of player contracts are out in the open. Transfer and loan fees are out for public consumption while in Indian cricket, the game’s governing body’s IPL transparency is only restricted to the player auction where players are bought like valuables at an antique sale.
If the IPL has to pass the test of integrity, it must be like the EPL in terms of player payments and transfers. Players have spoken openly in the sting operation about their intention to jump ship if they get a better deal which involves black money.
Not only must the BCCI be firm in whatever punishment they dish out to the offenders, they also must police the financial dealings which teams have with players. Already, the IPL does not lend itself to the loyalty factor with only some players being retained by their franchises. For example, at the start of the extravaganza, Adam Gilchrist played for Deccan Chargers. Now, he turns up for Kings XI Punjab. Examples likes these point to a possible flaw in the great IPL concept. Add the now-reported sinister aspect to it and the sheen is off.
Thankfully, the big names in Indian cricket are not part of the latest controversy. Yet, there is enough reason for concern because this one involves young minds.