IPL has changed landscape of world cricket: Majola

May 25th, 2009 - 10:09 pm ICT by IANS  

By Fakir Hassen
Johannesburg, May 25 (IANS) The Indian Premier League (IPL) has changed the landscape of world cricket, Cricket South Africa (CSA) chief executive Gerald Majola said.

Majola, who largely maintained a silence throughout the five-week IPL 2 series in South Africa after announcing the hosting of the event with IPL supremo Lalit Modi two months ago, declared the series “a resounding success”.

“Properly handled, the IPL concept will bring about the real globalisation of the sport for the first time,” Majola said in the wake of the final Sunday that saw the largest ever gathering for any international event in the country.

“This should enable the longer forms of cricket to prosper, but only if they are made to be publicly attractive in the 21st century and beyond.

“CSA’s main reason for taking on the challenge of hosting the IPL was to assist an ICC member country who had problems hosting a major tournament for reasons beyond its control,” Majola said.

“We knew that CSA had the climate, facilities, know-how and a cricket-loving public to back up the successful hosting of this second IPL tournament even at this short notice. To see it all come together with a full house at the Liberty Life Wanderers Stadium for the final was incredible.”

Majola said the IPL had lifted the spirits of the country just as it experienced “a lot of doom and gloom politically and economically”.

“The tournament also heightened interest in cricket worldwide. It has given a number of young South African cricketers a chance to play top level cricket against, and with, many of the world’s greatest stars. This will give them huge confidence going into the forthcoming ICC World Twenty20 in England.

“Finally, the 2009 IPL has re-confirmed South Africa as a wonderful host to major sporting events, and a home for the world’s rainbow cultures. It has also brought in unexpected and very welcome funds for the further development of South African cricket, mainly in previously disadvantaged communities,” he said.

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