Indian Premier League
The IPL, or the Indian Premier League, is a Twenty20 professional cricket tournament held every year in India around March or April. Founded by the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) in 2008, the league has eight teams that represent eight different Indian cities. The tournament is the world's most-attended cricketing event in the world. In fact, in 2014, the league was ranked sixth in the world by average attendance across all sports leagues. In 2019, the league's brand value was around $6.7 billion.
The IPL was partially created in response to the ICL (Indian Cricket League), a private cricket league not recognized by the BCCI. The Indian cricket board was irked further when several of its committee members - particularly legends of the game such as Kapil Dev - joined ICL's executive board despite being in a formal association with the BCCI in some capacity.
To ensure players and legends of the game do not join or show their affiliation for the non-recognized league any further, the BCCI tried to make its domestic tournaments a lot more lucrative for the players and the coaching and non-coaching staff. It also imposed life bans on players who joined the ICL or were considering doing so.
The board's biggest move against the ICL was the launch of the IPL. However, the mastermind behind the Indian T20 league, Lalit Modi claimed that the IPL wasn't a retort to the ICL and that the franchise-based tournament was in the making two years prior to its first season in 2008.
Seasons and Teams
The IPL has had 12 seasons until 2019. The 2020 season had to be postponed indefinitely due to the coronavirus pandemic. The 2019 season was won by the Mumbai Indians, which has bagged four IPL titles in total. The second most successful team in the IPL is the Chennai Super Kings, which has won three titles.
The Super Kings, in fact, is considered the most consistent team in the IPL since it has entered the playoffs stages during all IPL seasons - a feat that even the four-time champs, the Mumbai Indians cannot boast of. However, the Super Kings, along with the Rajasthan Royals, was banned from the tournament for two years in 2015 following its role in a betting and match-fixing scandal.
Other noteworthy teams that are currently part of the cash-rich league include the Kolkata Knight Riders, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kings XI Punjab, Sunrisers Hyderabad, and Delhi Capitals. Teams that were formerly part of the league include the Deccan Chargers, Pune Warriors India, Gujarat Lions, Rising Pune Supergiant, and Kochi Tuskers Kerala.