The inaugural Women’s IPL is likely to begin in the first week of March. Five teams will compete and all the matches will be held in Mumbai.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Monday, January 16, announced that Viacom18 have grabbed the media rights for the upcoming Women’s Indian Premier League (IPL) for Rs 951 crore for five years after pipping other bidders, including Disney Star and Sony, in the closed-bid auction. The auction for the T20 league was conducted by the cricket board in Mumbai on Monday. The inaugural Women’s IPL is likely to begin in the first week of March. Five teams will compete and all the matches will be held in Mumbai.
The global rights comprise three categories—linear (TV), digital, and combined (TV and digital). Viacom18 successfully bid for the combined rights. In the men’s IPL, separate rights are sold across regions. “Women’s cricket has been on the up since a few years and the recently concluded bilateral series against Australia is a great testament to how popular women’s cricket has become in India,” BCCI president Roger Binny said in a release issued by the board. “It was only apt to get our own women’s T20 league and give the fans more of women’s cricket,” he said.
According to BCCI secretary Jay Shah, the fee per match will come to Rs 7.09 crore for the next five years. “The broadcasters play a key role in taking the game to a wider audience and their active interest in the league is a clear indication that the Women’s IPL is headed in the right direction. The per-match valuation of Rs 7.09 crore is something that has never previously been registered for a women’s game,” Jay said, adding, “I congratulate Viacom18 for securing both the TV and digital rights with a combined bid of Rs 951 crores and welcome them onboard. The journey has well and truly started and we will take another major step this month when the five franchises are announced.” Viacom18 had won the men’s IPL digital rights for Rs 23,758 crore while Disney Star had retained the TV rights for Rs 23,575 crore for a five-year period starting 2023 during a three-day auction held in June 2022.
IPL governing council chairman Arun Singh Dhumal said, “The faith of all our bidders for this process also testifies that they see value in investing in this property which will only be growing with each passing year. “Women’s cricket has shown immense growth in the past few years and our own T20 league, it only solidifies our approach towards women’s cricket and the potential it has for growth in India,” he said.
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