Saving an Indian Cricket League from Itself


Jun 21 2021 • 35 mins

A cricket match played on April 18th 2008 between two city-based teams in India marks a historic moment in sports. It was the beginning of the Indian Premier League (IPL), a radically new tournament within the shortest format of cricket. Spearheaded by a flamboyant businessman, the IPL was to become for cricket what the National Football League (NFL) is to American football: an exciting prime-time entertainment for a new, global fanbase. And that worked – at first. Then the IPL's founder is thrown out, scandal rocks the league, and even diehard fans turn away from their beloved sport. In this episode, host Gabriela Cowperthwaite takes you back to the exciting origins of the league and behind the scenes to how the IPL rallies to save itself. Learn how a reformed league with a newly-appointed representative team restored transparency to the game, and how rival cricket boards became allies to stage a tournament during an even bigger crisis: the global pandemic. Listen to exciting analysis from Prakash Wakankar, a cricket commentator with the BBC, and hear from Simon Hughes, former English cricketer and co-author of "A New Innings," a book about the IPL. Also hear from "A New Innings" co-author Manoj Badale, lead owner of the IPL team Rajasthan Royals, and from Shane Watson, the former Aussie cricketer and founder of T20 Stars. Plus, Rehmatullah Sheikh, Teamistry's Story Producer and a massive cricket fan, joins in to talk about his experience with the IPL and the reforms that helped it bounce back from disgrace.

Teamistry is an original podcast from Atlassian. For the transcript of this episode and extras, go to