Australians sold out on the IPL: Bindra

May 12th, 2008 - 5:30 pm ICT by admin  

By Veturi Srivatsa
New Delhi, May 12 (IANS) A key member of the IPL core group Inderjit Singh Bindra says Cricket Australia (CA) now has a better appreciation of the Indian Premier League and that it is keen on finding a slot for it in the Future Tours Programme (FTP) so that players from all countries could get equal opportunity to play in the championship. Bindra, who returned home Sunday night from a short visit to Melbourne, however, told IANS that the IPL has to wait till the next cycle of the FTP for a slot in the international calendar. Till then adjustments in the tour itineraries will have to be made to get overseas players to play in the Twenty20 tournament.

Bindra, a former president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said CA and the Indian board would want a window for IPL without tinkering much with the FTP coming into force in 2012.

The ongoing inaugural IPL has affected players from Australia, West Indies and New Zealand as it clashed with their tours whereas England players have been barred from playing in it because the county season clashed with the inaugural Twenty20 tournament.

Bindra, who had one-on-one discussions with the CA directors on various cricket issues at Melbourne suburb Aitken Hill resort Friday, said he was delighted at the interest the Australians were taking in the telecast of IPL matches. “The Australians are really excited about the IPL and interested in knowing about its future and the Champions League.”

Bindra, who will take over as the principal adviser to the International Cricket Council, said the Australians were convinced that the IPL was indeed a value addition to world cricket.

“I have been able to clear their misapprehensions about the IPL and they now believe that the newest and the shortest form of the game has the makings of a truly global sport.”

On receiving the feedback from the Australian players, who returned home to join the national squad for their tour of West Indies after playing in the early matches, CA directors wanted to know how to replicate the franchise league in other countries so that they could have a uniform Champions League.

“The Australian players told the CA directors how well the event had been conducted with hardly any hiccups, the travel arrangements in particular being perfect,” he said.

Bindra explained to the CA directors the merits of the franchise system that will help the national boards to generate money to take care of infrastructure and fund domestic cricket.

Bindra also gave his views on taking the game to China and North America and also told them how he was looking at his role as the ICC adviser.

Bindra, who was mainly responsible for making India and Pakistan play in the Sahara Cup at Toronto, wants CA to join BCCI’s effort to take the game to as many countries and as fast as possible.

Bindra has also made it clear that the BCCI’s interest is in the promotion of the game and not to become a “big bully”.

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