There is no plan to stage Indian Premier League outside the country but franchises are free to play abroad, IPL chief executive Sundar Raman said on Friday.
Dismissing reports that a second IPL is in the offing and it would be held abroad, Raman said he could only foresee a situation with the franchises playing occasional matches abroad.
“This is Indian Premier League and will be played in India. Now if the IPL franchises want to play matches abroad, that is upto them. We did have the previous edition in South Africa, which was a blessing in disguise since it unlocked a new market for us but IPL would take place in India,” said Raman.
“We are happy to be back in India this year. People are thronging stadiums and there are no plans to have IPL abroad,” said Raman after announcing IPL’s tie-up with Topps, global leader in sports and entertainment collectibles.
Earlier, media reports had quoted IPL commissioner Lalit Modi as saying that a second IPL could be staged abroad.
Raman’s attention was drawn to the growing list of injured players participating in the ongoing IPL and how it jeopardised their prospect in the Twenty20 World Cup starting next month in the West Indies.
The IPL CEO, however, sprang to the Twenty 20 league’s defence and passed the buck to the players.
“Injuries are part and parcel of any game and it’s always a concern. Professional players have to face injuries but you cannot blame the first few days of IPL for their injuries,” Raman said.
“And we are talking about professional players who know their body well,” he added.
Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who leads Chennai Super Kings in IPL 3, is out of action with an elbow injury, while his Delhi Daredevils counterpart Gautam Gambhir has been sidelined by a hamstring injury.
Among others, South Africa skipper Graeme Smith and England all-rounder Dmitri Mascarenhas have gone home with injuries picked during the IPL matches.
Topps vice president Chris Rodman and CEO Ryan O’Hara were also present on the occasion.
Following the tie-up, Topps will launch a range of collectible IPL products and IPL trading cards from the next season.