Why did CSK, Gujarat Titans decide not to bid for Women’s IPL Teams?

Necessary proceedings in the lead-up to the inception of the highly awaited cricketing league, the Women’s Indian Premier League (W-IPL), are now finally picking pace. The 23rd of January was looked to as a big day heading into the tournament as interested franchise owners were asked by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to submit technical bids, and as the day unfolds a big surprise is here.

 

Kate Cross is a die-hard CSK Fan. PC: Twitter
Kate Cross is a die-hard CSK Fan. PC: Twitter

 

The Broad of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) recently invited bids for the right to “own and operate” teams. The BCCI statement read, “The Governing Council of the IPL invites bids from reputed entities to acquire the right to own and operate a team in Women’s Indian Premier League, through a tender process. The Invitation to Tender (ITT) will be available for purchase till January 21, 2023.”

The parties who have taken the Invitation To Tender (ITT) document for the Women’s IPL were asked to submit their technical bids post-10 AM and as the day unfolds, it is learnt that about 6 IPL franchises have formally submitted an expression of interest, but 3 of the 10 have made the final call to stay away.

Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders, SunRisers Hyderabad, Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Capitals, and Royal Challengers Bangalore had shown up with bid documents. Punjab Kings too was understood of being at the designated venue with the bid papers, but there’s no official confirmation yet.

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Of the 10, the three franchises who’ve made the final call to stay away from the Women’s IPL team bid are Chennai Super Kings, and the two new franchises, Lucknow Super Giants and Gujarat Titans. While Chennai Super Kings officials confirmed the decision of staying away is a strategic business call, the Gujarat Titans representative said the side wants to focus on the Men’s franchise for now, Lucknow Super Giants haven’t given a bite.

With regards to non-IPL parties, there is no clarity yet among those who have submitted papers but the Gujarat-based, Adani Group and Torrent Pharma, who had an eye on an IPL side too, have formally expressed interest.

With the BCCI having imposed a net worth clause of INR 1000 crore, early trends indicated towards a bidding war between a few renowned business firms that includes Haldiram, APL Apollo, Shriram Group, and the Nilgiri Group among other seasoned players of the market; the 10-IPL franchises, which now is 7 franchises, Manchester United’s owners – The Glazers family, the Adani Group are all in the mix, waiting for the 25th of January to seal a deal.

The Women’s IPL will see players from the Under-19 age brackets to the senior team, all expected to take part in the league’s inaugural edition. The tournament is highly likely to deliver elite Twenty20 (T20) action as it’ll be played on the back of an Under-19 women’s T20 World Cup and a senior women’s T20 World Cup, being reportedly scheduled to be played from the 4th to the 26th of March.

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(Inputs scoured from Vijay Tagore’s Cricbuzz publishing)

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