14th edition of IPL – Indian’s Cricketing Extravaganza is all set to start on 19th of September 2020. This edition is most awaited after so many anticipations and events getting unfolded for the last few months. It all started with the Corona Pandemic, which led to the postponement of the tournament. But that didn’t go well with BCCI, the Indian Cricket Board was in resolved to conduct this Big Ticket and Big Cheque tournament. So, after extremely intense conversations and planning, we are to see 14th edition of IPL hosted by U.A.E. This will be the second time that IPL is moving outside the Indian shores. Last time it happened was in 2009 when IPL coincided with Indian elections and the tournament was moved to South Africa.
While the COVID has a bigger role in damaging the plans and making it seriously tough for organisers, the organisers also have had their issues. Dhoni’s retirement from International Cricket, Raina & Bhajji leaving the squad and COVID drama in CSK Camp are just a few to name. All this will play on the minds of CSK.
Another issue dominating this year’s IPL apart from COVID is the voluntary back-off by Chinese company VIVO as the title sponsor for IPL. 440 crores deal went out of BCCI hands, but soon the organisers opened for new bids and DREAM11 bagged the rights. Also, Unacademy and CRED joined as co-sponsors. Somehow BCCI managed to get back a decent amount of money through sponsorships.
The celebrations and moments of madness will be limited this time obviously due to pandemic and health concerns. But the fun will all be moved into individual’s houses rather restricted. Maybe there won’t be any kind of restaurants or fan parks as well. That will hit the businesses too.
That’s all about the building up to the game, but the real game is just 11 days away!
Having discussed all that, once the real game starts there won’t be any dull moment. One thing is pretty sure and that’s genuine competition & high levels of entertainment.
Chennai and Mumbai, the repeat of 2019 final will be the first match of the season 2020. All the fans are eagerly waiting for one man and that’s MSD. No matter which team you are supporting, everyone is waiting to watch Dhoni enter the ground…
Teams are looking strong on the paper. The last auction has been a very active one for most of the franchises. The teams had to be rebuilt strategically and the spending amount was limited. We have new players in the squads and the big players were retained.
Virat’s Bangalore looks a comfortable team in batting like always adding Finch to the team. Bowling has to be of top level with Steyn, Zampa, Chahal and Yadav in the team. Mumbai spent enough to bag good players, Pattinson & Chris Lynn inclusion will be key for MI.
Like this, all the squads have made their best teams and the tournament is wide open this time. But there has to be one winner. For one winner, we need four playoff spots. Who will they be?
Here are my predictions on who will be the top 4 teams to qualify for playoffs:
- Mumbai Indians ★★★★★★★★★☆
- Sunrisers Hyderabad ★★★★★★★★☆☆
- Royal Challengers Bangalore ★★★★★★★★☆☆
- Delhi Capitals ★★★★★★★★☆☆
- Chennai Super Kings ★★★★★★★☆☆☆
- Kings XI Punjab ★★★★★★☆☆☆☆
- Rajasthan Royals ★★★★★☆☆☆☆☆
- Kolkata Knight Riders ★★★★★☆☆☆☆☆
That’s my predicted rating for the teams. I hope to get it right. But as we know this is T20, everyone has got the chance. All it needs is a good over and a perfect ball. All in all, we are in for a hugely entertaining season.
My favourites to win this year’s title are Mumbai or RCB. But, I will take it happily if Chennai or any other new team wins the 14th edition!