Viacom18, an Indian television network, spent 951 crore (£95.4m) to acquire the broadcast rights for the first five seasons of the women’s Indian Premier League. Because of this, the tournament has become one of the most prestigious in women’s sports worldwide and in the world of cricket.
Women’s Indian Premier League signs £95m television agreement
An outstanding sum, but far less than the 104 crore a match that made the IPL the second-most valuable sporting league in the world behind the NFL under the broadcast contract negotiated last June for the men’s event. On January 25th, the WIPL will open secret bids from potential owners to determine the names and host cities of the five franchises for the first March tournament.
The Glazer family, owners of Manchester United, have also expressed interest, and eight of the ten men’s IPL teams have stated their intention to bid to operate a women’s squad. After that, in February, there will be a player auction. The broadcast contract came after it was announced that Mithali Raj, India’s former captain and the sport’s best-known female cricketer, would be making a comeback at the age of 40 to play in the WIPL.
Jay Shah, the honorary secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, saidthe WIPL would “revolutionise women’s cricket not just in India but across the globe,” adding: “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 Indian Premier League is headed in the right direction.”