And now, a museum on Sachin

Mumbai: The Maharashtra government on Thursday announced that a museum on the career of Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar would soon be built in the state.

The museum will depict the life and cricket career of the master batsman, who recently became the first player in the history of the game to score a one-day international double hundred.

 
Sachin is also the first Indian sportsperson to have his wax statue erected at the famous Madame Tussauds wax museum in London.

The statue was erected last year on Sachin’s 36th birthday. The statue had been formally launched by Tendulkar in Mumbai, who had exclaimed “it was so real, it was fanastic! I’m glad it doesn’t breathe.”

 He became the first Indian sportsman to make the grade and joined cricket legends Brian Lara and Shane Warne.

 –zeenews

IPL will do billion-dollar business this year: Modi

In terms of brand value or valuation there could be bigger sports club in the West but most of those have negative cash flow, Mr. Modi said

Indian Premier League would generate a revenue of USD one billion this season, thanks to huge fan following across the globe, attracting a large number of advertisers, its Commissioner Lalit Modi said on Wednesday.

“The tournament is still on and we have not reached the final number… Yes, it will be more than a billion dollar (about Rs. 4,700 crore) this season … last season we did USD 450 dollar.

“Thereafter, we would double every year,” Mr. Modi said and asserted that as long as the fans keep coming to IPL, the league’s brand value would increase and hence the revenue.

Revenue for Sony, the official broadcaster, alone would be about Rs. 700 crore to Rs. 800 crore, he said brushing aside the criticism that the advertising rates for the IPL’s third season were very high.

“There may be some advertisers who feel that way but there are lot many others who are willing to join us,” he said pointing out that the huge success of the tournament in terms of TV viewership would certainly entice the advertisers.

“There is no other sporting event across the world generating more eyeballs than the IPL,” he said, adding that the league was virtually in every part of the world through either broadcasters of through the Internet — via YouTube.

Asked about an independent brand consultancy valuing Brand IPL at USD 4.13 billion, more than double from last year, Mr. Modi said that it was not done by the organisation and .

“It is indeed valuation given to us by outsiders.”

Brand Finance, which came out with IPL brand’s latest valuation, said that the brand alone has risen significantly, providing tremendous economic value to its owner — BCCI.

It said this demonstrates the exponential value of IPL and the Brand potential in a cricket loving country like India and other global cricketing countries. Although the English Premier League is valued much higher at USD 12 billion, the IPL’s valuation has risen above USD four billion in just three years, Brand Finance pointed out.

In terms of brand value or valuation there could be bigger sports club in the West but most of those have negative cash flow, Mr. Modi said and pointed out that the English Premier League, though it commands a very high brand value, was facing a USD 800 million deficit.

“Here, we are talking about cash flow and it is growing to grow in future at IPL,” he said, while detailing the dynamics of financing of IPL franchises.

Mr. Modi said that the IPL teams had no load on them and “we are providing infrastructure and stadium free of cost.”

Asked about predictions that IPL could not sustain, Mr. Modi retorted: “Let them (cynics) say anything. I know the numbers. I know the game. I have delivered. We will continue to deliver.”

The success of IPL hinged on the capacity to draw huge crowds, a fact that need not be proven again and again, he said, adding that other factors included that teams were equally placed in terms of finances and capacity to buy the players.

“The level playing field between the teams would make the event more interesting,” he said and added that another factor for the success was that the revenue would be proportionate to the number of matches that are played.

This season there are 60 matches and the number would go to 90 by next year and, therefore, the revenue would increase on a pro-rata basis, he said

Aussies accused of racially abusing Indian players

A cricket tribunal in Australia’s Geelong city is looking into an accusation that 10 local cricketers racially abused a team with six players of Indian descent, a media report said on Thursday.

The Geelong Cricket Association discussed the accusations till early Thursday morning after learning that players from the Thomson club racially abused members of the Waurn Ponds team during a fourth grade qualifying final on Saturday, The Age reported.

Waurn Ponds team has up to six players of Indian descent.

Cricket Victoria has sent its code of conduct commissioner Ron Beazley to speak to the players before the hearing officially started in Geelong.

Geelong Cricket Association president Ron Dew said it was the first time the association had heard such charges. The association, he said, had been glad to accept Beazley’s expertise.

“He is the most experienced person in Australia to deal with this sort of issue,” he was quoted as saying.

There have been a string of attacks on Indians in Australia since May last year. One of the assaults proved fatal. Nitin Garg was fatally stabbed Jan 2 while walking to his place of work.

Dhoni ruled out of IPL for 10 days

Chennai Super Kings captain M.S. Dhoni will miss IPL action for the next 10 days due to the elbow injury he sustained during a match against Kolkata Knight Riders on Tuesday

 Chennai Super Kings’ Indian Premier League campaign received a huge blow on Wednesday with skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni being ruled out of action for the next 10 days because of an elbow injury.

“Dhoni will be out of action for the next 10 days and the exact nature of his injury is being examined by the doctors at a private hospital here,” a team management source told PTI.

Dhoni underwent an x-ray test after being hit by a rising Shane Bond delivery in yesterday’s match against Kolkata Knight Riders at Eden Gardens even though Coach Stephen Fleming ruled out any major injury to the India skipper.

The source, however, said that Dhoni will be travelling with the team to Delhi, where the Chennai side will take on Delhi Daredevils at Ferozeshah Kotla on Friday.

“He will be travelling with the team to Delhi,” the source said.

“An official announcement will be made once the nature of the injury is determined by the doctors,” he added.

Apart from the match against the Daredevils, the injury also rules Dhoni out of Chennai Super Kings’ matches against Kings XI Punjab (March 21), Royal Challengers Bangalore (March 23) and Mumbai Indians (March 25).

IPL cricket: Why is Sachin Tendulkar so harshly judged as captain of Mumbai Indians?

The most revered cricketer in the world is Sachin Tendulkar and if anybody tells you differently, he (or she) should be lowered head first from the top of the Eiffel Tower, have his (or her) ears tweaked, nose tickled with a feather and  knuckles rapped with a sledgehammer.

Usually, there is more tortuous punishment for heresy, but since India was born out of non-violence (never mind Harbhajan Singh planting his palm smack on Sreesanth’s chubby cheek in the first edition of the IPL), the offender could be let off after that and fed a purgative to cleanse his system of such outrageous thoughts.

In India, of course, Tendulkar is not only revered but deified. He is master, lord, master-blaster, god, little master… you can choose the most euphemistic description without fear of reproach or dissent. Everything fits right. Yet, there remains one area where his stupendous record falls short: when it comes to captaincy, god becomes all too mortal and questions are occasionally asked, even if in furtive tones.

It is borne out by Wisden, and from anecdotes real and apocryphal, about how some of the game’s greatest players were somehow never brilliant captains. Hammond, Sobers, Richards, Lara, Botham are a few names that come readily to mind: their captaincy record pales in comparison to their other feats. Is it because they expect every player to perform to the same high degree that comes so easily to them, and are therefore impatient of lesser mortals?

But while I agree that Tendulkar’s record as Test captain falls short of the extraordinary standards he has set otherwise, I think this assessment is also a tad unfair because he is also judged by a different yardstick from other players. For instance, in Saturday’s match between Mumbai Indians and Rajasthan Royals, Shane Warne, considered the Wizard of Oz in matters of tactics and man-management, conceded 212 runs to Mumbai and even lost the match, but came out unscathed as captain; Tendulkar, having won the game, however narrowly, had darts of doubt thrown at him.

Life’s not fair, even for the world’s best, best-known, most loved, richest cricketer. I doubt any captain on Saturday could have done much to thwart Yusuf Pathan’s onslaught at the magnificent Cricket Club of India. When a batsman scores 100 runs off just 37 deliveries, a captain can at best wring his hands in despair and pray.  Tendulkar did more: he ran to his bowlers to guide them, cajoled his fielders to put in more effort — did so much work in fact that he ended up being fined for slowing down the over-rate.

None of this could faze Pathan however. With four wickets down for very little, and chasing a daunting 213, Rajasthan looked down for the count till the tall and strong Pathan opened his powerful, imposing shoulders and started hitting the ball with such frequency and such long distances that it seemed the parameters of a cricket field needed serious and rapid revision.

In the end, Mumbai won by a whisker, a mere four runs, but Pathan it was who won the awe and admiration of everybody, including the mighty Tendulkar. He has come nowhere near a Test match and last year lost his place in the one-day side. His batsmanship still appears one-dimensional. Make that two: slam-bang. But in the Twenty20 firmament, Pathan is the game’s fastest rising superstar.

In 2008, when the IPL began, he came cheap; at a little more than $100,000. Come next year, when all players will be up for sale again, the buzz already is that he will be a Multi-Million Dollar Baby. Want to know more why the IPL holds so much fascination for almost every cricketer in the world?

Tendulkar, Gambhir fined $20,000

Mumbai Indians captain Sachin Tendulkar, his Delhi Daredevils counterpart Gautam Gambhir and Kings XI Punjab skipper Kumar Sangakkara have been fined $20,000 each for their teams’ slow overrate in the Indian Premier League matches played on Saturday.

An IPL release said Tendulkar was fined after the Mumbai Indians “were assessed to be two overs behind their required rate” during their four-run win against Rajasthan Royals at Mumbai’s Brabourne Stadium.

“Under the IPL’s Code of Conduct relating to minimum over rate offences, Tendulkar was fined $20,000 by match referee Andy Pycroft,” the statement said.

In the game at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium at Mohali, both the Kings XI Punjab and Delhi Daredevils were each assessed to be one over behind the required rate.

Fines were slapped on both the captains by match referee Srinivas Venkataraghavan.

With Gambhir leading from the front with a knock of 72, Delhi Daredevils beat Kings XI by five wickets.

Earlier, Kolkata Knight Riders captain Sourav Ganguly was fined an identical amount for his side’s slow over rate during the tournament opener against defending champions Deccan Chargers at the D.Y. Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai Friday.

Ganguly fined USD 20,000 for slow over rate

Kolkata Knight Riders skipper Sourav Ganguly has been fined USD 20,000 by the IPL for maintaining slow over rate during their 11-run triumph over defending champions Deccan Chargers at the D Y Patil Stadium here.

The Knight Riders were adjudged to be three overs behind the required rate during their last night’s IPL opener against Chargers and under the IPL’s Code of Conduct relating to minimum over rate offences, match referee Andy Pycroft fined Ganguly.

The Knight Riders upset the defending champions thanks to a 130-run partnership between Owais Shah and Angelo Matthews which allowed Ganguly’s side to claw their way back onto the game after losing two early wickets.

Chargers skipper Adam Gilchrist’s breezy 35-ball 54 went in vain as Ganguly-led side restricted Deccan to 150 for seven.