Weather, stadiums make South Africa best choice for IPL

March 26th, 2009 - 7:11 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 26 (IANS) South Africa’s “superb” weather and stadium capacity and lighting made it a favourite to host the second edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), said a tourism official from the country.
Excited that South Africa was hosting the IPL, expected to start April 18, acting CEO of South African Tourism Didi Moyle said: “South African Tourism is delighted that our destination will, again, play host to an event of global stature and glamour.”

He said the country had won “the right to host” the IPL event over England “chiefly because of its superb weather”.

“The IPL also decided that South Africa had both the stadium capacity and stadium lighting demanded by an event of this stature. Other factors that counted in South Africa’s favour included the cost of telecasting the matches, transport, accommodation and security,” he said in a statement issued here.

“IPL will be screened into millions of homes, giving destination South Africa outstanding exposure,” he added.

“The decision that the 59-game Indian Premier League cricket championship is coming to South Africa is the second cricket scoop by the FIFA 2010 World Cup host nation in little more than a week and puts this country’s ability to host the world’s high-end, high-profile big events well beyond doubt,” he added.

The decision to host the IPL in South Africa came more than a week after the International Cricket Council (ICC) decided to bring its Champions Trophy to South Africa when it could no longer ignore security considerations in host nation Sri Lanka, he said.

“It was security too, that drove organisers to move the IPL to South Africa,” Moyle said.

The twenty20 competition was moved out of India due to security reasons as the general elections are also being held during the same time.

“We are proud that we have the capacity and wherewithal to serve a feast of cricket to the world. The IPL comes with multi billion dollar television broadcast rights, and will be screened into millions of homes, giving destination South Africa outstanding exposure not only in India, but in many of our other key target markets as well,” Moyle added.

He said the opening ceremony and first match of the IPL would take place at Newlands in Cape Town on April 18, a day after the final one-day international match between South Africa and Australia at the Wanderers in Johannesburg.

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