IPL governing council decides in favour of Kochi (Lead)

December 5th, 2010 - 4:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Dec 5 (IANS) The Indian Premier League (IPL) governing council Sunday decided to retain the Kochi franchise after its owners, in a last-minute agreement, sorted out their differences in the shareholding pattern.

The decision was taken at the IPL governing council meeting here, Board of Control for Cricket in India secretary N. Srinivasan confirmed.

“The IPL governing council has confirmed that the Kochi franchisee had satisfactorily responded to the notice issued to them by the BCCI and decided that the franchisee — Kochi Cricket Pvt. Ltd, would play in the IPL from 2011 onwards,” Srinivasan said in a statement.

The decision came as a huge relief for the Kochi franchise as their IPL dream looked all but over when Nov 25, barely two days before the the deadline given to them to sort out their ownership issues, the squabbling owners wrote to the board that the consortium had failed to settle their differences and were therefore withdrawing from the league.

But last week in Nagpur, the governing council deferred its decision on the franchisee for the third time after the investors reached a agreement.

The governing council Sunday accepted the new shareholding pattern in which the Gaekwad family has brought down its free equity which was the bone of contention among the owners.

Kochi will be therefore the 8th team in IPL’s fourth season which will begin less than a week after the World Cup.

Satyajit Gaekwad of Rendezvous Sports World , which owns the Kochi team, told IANS that the Gaekwad brothers have decided to bring down their stakes from 25 to 10 per cent.

“We have reduced it from 25 per cent to 10 per cent,” Satyajit told IANS.

He said that now the consortium is united and looking forward to put up a good team for the coming IPL season.

“Earlier we were a consortium. Now we are a family. We are very happy to be back in the game. We will do everything to rise upto the expectaion of the cricket fraternity and Kerala cricket.

“We will ensure that the Kochi team is the best and we will work like angels to make it the best IPL team.”

Kerala Cricket Association secretary T.C.Mathew was equally elated with the decision.

“We are excited about seeing Kochi in IPL 4. A lot of work was done for the infrastructure of the stadium. A total of 33 crores were spent on the renovation.

“Football, cricket and athletic are the most popular sports here. The franchise will have global fan base as every one out of seven Keralites are either in Middle East, Europe and America. So, with the local and international support, we are expecting capacity crowd to fill the stadium.”

Rendezvous Sports World owned the rights for the Kochi IPL team for a bid price of Rs.1,500 crore. Anchor Earth, Parinee Developers, Rosy Blue and Film Wave hold 74 percent of the equity while the Gaekwad brothers, who own Rendezvous Sports World, own the remaining stake as free equity for services rendered in successfully bidding for the franchise.

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