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Don’t Tolerate late pull-outs!

Updated on: 14 April,2024 07:10 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Sunil Gavaskar |

BCCI should ban all players who have withdrawn from IPL at the last moment citing personal reasons. Schedules for the international season and various T20 leagues are known in advance. So, to cite tiredness or whatever and withdraw should be a complete no-no; injuries or family issues are understandable

Don’t Tolerate late pull-outs!

Rajasthan Royals’s Australia leg-spinner Adam Zampa withdrew days before the ongoing IPL citing personal reasons. Pic for representation purpose only

Sunil GavaskarThe IPL is in its third week and has already had a couple of nail-biting last ball finishes. That is what makes it so exciting.  Of course, there have been some pretty easy wins as well, particularly the manner in which Mumbai Indians took Royal Challengers Bengaluru to the ‘dhobi ghat’ and gave them a thorough washing.  Delhi Capitals also comfortably beating Lucknow Super Giants in Lucknow broke the jinx of LSG defending 160-plus scores on their home ground.

Great conduct by skippers

What has been most impressive is how the Indian skippers of the various franchisees have conducted themselves at the presentation ceremony after the match. They have been articulous, they have spoken in an admirable way about their team’s win or loss and generally conducted themselves with such grace and good humour that it has been a real pleasure to listen to them at the presentation.  Jasprit Bumrah, even though not the captain of the Mumbai Indians, talking about how he approaches every match was an absolute delight. He proved once again that he is not only the best all format bowler in the game today, but also that rare species, an intelligent thinking fast bowler.

Also Read: IPL 2024 | “There’s no difference. He’s as cool as it gets": Fleming on skipper Gaikwad

The BCCI will shortly be having a conclave with the owners of the various franchisees to draw a road map for the mega auction for next year’s IPL. There will be discussions on the number of retentions, the salary cap and various aspects concerned with making the IPL even better than ever before. One thing though, that the BCCI could do well to insist on, is to completely ban all those players who have withdrawn from the IPL at the last moment citing personal reasons.  Today, the schedule for the entire international season as well as the various T20 leagues are known well in advance and therefore to cite tiredness or whatever and withdraw from the IPL should be a complete no-no.  If the withdrawal takes place because of injury or somebody in the family being seriously unwell then it is okay.  But to withdraw from the IPL at the Nth hour for flimsy personal reasons should not be tolerated at all. 

When the franchisees go for the auction, they go with a strategy and pick up certain players that suit their team’s combination and who they feel will add to the chances of their team winning the title that year. 

So, when players withdraw a few days before the tournament starts, it completely upsets the plans of the franchisee and puts them in an awkward spot. Here the franchisee should be the one who should take the big step and keep the prestige of the IPL above their title winning aspirations and themselves not go for players who have pulled out in the middle of the tournament. Most of these last minute withdrawals are nothing but an ego trip where the player has been bought at the base price, which by the way he himself has chosen, and so cannot complain that he was picked up at that price.  If you treat the IPL as if it’s a trifling tournament, then the IPL should also tell you that your absence is not going to make an iota of difference to the popularity and more importantly the quality of the tournament. If the IPL can send a message like that to all these players, it will help the franchisees to a great extent in being able to plan on what their squads should be.

No breaches, please

The other aspect of the IPL that could be looked at and tightened, is the salary cap of the franchisees. Next year there could well be an increase in the total of salary cap of the squads together.  That salary cap should not be breached under any circumstances.  While the transfer of players is understandable and can be seen as being within the total salary cap of the franchisee and is in the public domain, the trading of a player from one franchisee to another is known only to the two franchisees and the BCCI. But what if  the traded numbers go over the total salary cap of the franchisee?  This is something that the BCCI has to be very particular about because otherwise any franchisee with deep pockets, and with the way the share of all IPL sponsorships is increasing year by year, all the franchisees have deep pockets indeed and they can trade a player with an amount that exceeds the total salary cap.

These are just thoughts of someone who was in the Governing Council of the IPL for the first three years and also the President of the IPL for one year and is, therefore, very keen to ensure that the IPL remains the greatest T20 league in the world.

Professional Management Group

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