BCCI to announce 5 franchise for Women’s IPL on 25th January

Women’s IPL (WIPL) is just two months down the line and a lot is happening in the background. The BCCI has been working to ensure all the ends are worked out seamlessly. First things first, it has been reported by ESPN Cricinfo that the BCCI is likely to reveal the names of the five franchises of the inaugural season of the WIPL and the corresponding cities on 25th January.

Which franchises are interested in owning a Women's IPL team?
Which franchises are interested in owning a Women’s IPL team?

Currently, the bids have been submitted in sealed envelopes and will be disclosed on the said day and the BCCI has reiterated its stance on how it is not obliged to accept the bid with the highest monetary value and will only look for bidders who actively want to enhance the growth of women’s cricket in India. It was just last week that the tender document purchase option was made available and it has been speculated that a single bidder can contest for more than one city. While no baseline price has been set by the BCCI, bidders have been invited to quote a price for ten seasons. Bidders have the option of competing for more than one franchise/city, however, the BCCI has said that the winning bidder will only receive one franchise. If two of the highest offers for a single venue are equal, the BCCI has said that a re-bid will be held. If the highest bids for two locations from two distinct bidders are similar, the BCCI will have the “discretion to decide the order”.

Additionally, the BCCI has also shortlisted 10 potential cities and venues including the capacity for spectators in the tender. The plan is to have these shortlisted 10 cities but it differs slightly from the one the BCCI had originally submitted at the general body meeting last year to the state associations. The BCCI stated at the time that it intended to select one city from each of the country’s six zones or to hold the tournament in a half-dozen cities without adequate home bases for the five teams but that has now been dismissed.

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The list is as follows:-

City

Stadium

Capacity

Ahmedabad

Narendra Modi Stadium

112,560

Kolkata

Eden Gardens

65,000

Chennai

Ma Chidambaram Stadium

50,000

Bangalore

M Chinnaswamy Stadium

42,000

Delhi

Arun Jaitley Stadium

55,000

Dharamsala

HPCA Stadium

20,900

Guwahati

Barsapara Stadium

38,650

Indore

Holkar Stadium

26,900

Lucknow

AB Vajpayee, Ekana Cricket Stadium

48,800

Mumbai

Wankhede / DY Patil / Brabourne Stadiums

Either of the three grounds will be chosen based on the availability

It has also been reported based on the Invitation to Tender (ITT) document secured by ESPN Cricinfo that the first three seasons of the WIPL spanning from 2023-25 will have a cumulative 22 matches and in the league phase each team will square off against the other twice and the table topper will qualify for the finals. The teams that finish second and third will then play an eliminator to have a second finalist. March, as reported earlier will be the window for the league and a plan to have more matches in the league will be incorporated from the 2026 season onwards.

In other news, the BCCI plans to solicit sealed bids for the WIPL media rights. While no starting price has been announced, the BCCI anticipates fierce competition in light of the high sums spent last year to secure the lucrative men’s IPL rights. As shown in the IPL, media rights revenue is an important component of the revenues earned by both the BCCI and the franchises. The BCCI has chosen to use the same revenue-sharing model it used in the IPL for distribution from the central revenue pool to franchises. Every year, the BCCI will pay the franchisee 80% of the total Central Team Licensing Income. 80% of Central Rights income in the first five years, 60% in the following five years, and 50% after that is the speculated plan.

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More to follow!

I am a first year postgraduate student pursuing a MA in Media and Communication Studies at Christ University, Bengaluru. I am a podcaster, blogger and an avid cricket fan. When not glued to cricket matches, you can find me submerged in books and thinking about cricket all the time.

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