Kolkata Knight Riders' co-owner Shah Rukh Khan steered clear of the on-going battle between Sahara and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), but said he would like to see Indian Premier League team owners on the IPL Governing Council.
Shah Rukh unveils KKR's new logo at a city hotel yesterday. Pic/Suresh
"There are a lot of issues in the IPL and they are slowly rising. Franchise owners have to actively participate," Shah Rukh said during the unveiling of the KKR's new logo at a city hotel yesterday.
Asked what he felt about the IPL always being in the throes of controversy since its inception in 2008, the Bollywood star said, "It's better to ask those teams who are involved in controversy. We (KKR) are lucky in this sense. We never had any issues with the IPL. Many such (sporting) leagues in India have been confronted with issues as the concept is new here. IPL-type leagues are not only required in cricket, but also in other sports like football, hockey and badminton."
Teams like Kings XI Punjab, Rajasthan Royals and most of all Kochi Tuskers Kerala and Pune Warriors have been involved in issues. After poor performances in the first three editions of Indian Premier League, his team staged a turnaround of sorts in the fourth season and even qualified for the Champions League T20.
"We had a disappointing start to the IPL in the first three years. But last year after coming up with a new team, we made it to the semi-finals. This year, we are much more stronger with Brendon (McCullum) and Marchant de Lange coming in. There is great spirit in the team with a new attitude," Shah Rukh believes that new coach Trevor Bayliss will add great value to the team, "Trevor has a good record as a coach.
Don't forget, he took Sri Lanka to the final of the World Cup last year and has also coached Sydney Sixers, who ended up as winners of the Australian Big Bash League this year." On former coach Dav Whatmore, who announced his decision to quit the Kolkata franchise, Shah Rukh said: "We will miss Dav. He was fantastic last year, but has some other commitments."