The Women’s Indian T20 League will take another big step on Monday as the bidders will submit their bids to buy a franchise. While the deadline for the bids in the cash-rich league is set for Wednesday, it is worth reminding that technical bids will give a clear idea of who will be in the race to purchase a team as big bidders like the Ambanis and Adanis are likely to splash some cash in the market.
With the Mumbai-based franchise being the richest Indian T20 League franchise, the Ambanis are expected to participate in the women’s league auction in a big way but there has not been much talk of late about the Adanis. They have been quite under the radar after perceived disappointment in the men’s tournament auction where they fell short of landing the Ahmedabad franchise. Wiser with that experience, they could be playing smart this time around and have maintained a low profile, avoiding any kind of publicity and public attention.
A great step for enhancing exposure for women’s cricket
The Indian Cricket Board has listed 10 Indian cities and the venues in the tender, which allows a single party to bid for more than one city. There is no base price set, and bids will be accepted for a 10-year period (2023-32). Among the eligibility criteria listed in the tender document, the cricket board has said the audited net worth of the bidder must be at least INR 1000 crore as of March 31, 2022. Consortiums or joint-venture companies are not eligible.
The official cricket board of India has included a key clause in the selection of the winning bid, saying it would not be “obliged to accept the highest monetary offer”. This is similar to the clause the cricket council body had laid down when it sold media rights for women’s global events for the 2023-27 period last year. The Indian Cricket Board has stated it will look at the vision bidders have towards enhancing the profile and accelerating the growth of women’s cricket in India.
Listing the objectives it desired in a potential successful bidder, the board said: “establishing a stable, successful, financially secure, long-term Franchise to participate in the League; ensuring the widest coverage and the widest possible audience for the League; assisting in the development of the game of women’s cricket in India at all levels; maximizing and enhancing exposure, wherever possible, for each of the official sponsors of the League; increasing and enhancing exposure for women’s cricket in India both within India and the rest of the world.” the Indian Cricket Board were quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.