The cricket world is filled with a variety of competitions but most people just look at the matches between countries like regular international series and events like the ICC Cricket World Cup.
The Indian Premier League is a famous cricket competition from India, a country home to a massive fanbase of the sport. Any cricket fan will hold the IPL in high regard because of its importance not only to the players but as the premier domestic cricket league to follow when there are no international matches.
For those unfamiliar with the IPL just yet, this is a league filled with surprises and exciting moments. Here are some of the biggest strengths of the Indian cricket league.
Players want to be in the IPL
If you ask, ‘why is Premier League and cricket in general extremely popular in India?’, you would be surprised to know that Indians are not only the players here. There are also international players or imports who move to India just to play and join in the fun of the IPL.
Stars shine in the IPL
Here are some of the best overseas players in the league’s history.
- Lasith Malinga (Sri Lanka)
- Chris Gayle (Jamaica)
- AB de Villiers (South Africa)
- Dwayne Bravo (Trinidad and Tobago)
- David Warner (Australia)
The skill level of the players moving to India is relatively high because they respect the IPL and its value for the sport. Budding cricketers dream of playing in India because of the IPL, and the best of the best have worked hard to reach this level.
Aside from the dream of playing in India, the IPL can also bring solid value to the players. The money, reputation, and career stability they gain in the IPL will be valuable when they return home to their national team.
Stars like de Villiers and Glenn Maxwell were only known for their time with their national teams before but when they moved to the IPL, they quickly turned into superstars.
IPL’s match quality
Any IPL match is exciting for any cricket fan because they are competitive. The IPL’s format is the T20, meaning it will be shorter than other formats. This makes it more digestible for fans and people just starting to get into the sport.
IPL matches are not only easy to digest, but they are a thrill ride. You can just go to any IPL match, and you will see some top-tier players and high-quality matches. Aside from that, you can also see the player and team rivalries, a norm for domestic leagues in other sports.
IPL’s blockbuster fixtures
The IPL has fostered some big-time fixtures through the years. The rivalry between Chennai Super Kings and the Mumbai Indians is the league’s most high-profile matchup.
IPL fans themselves have matches they vividly remember because it was an important time for the league and its followers. Here are a few of the matches fans point to when talking about the IPL’s match quality.
- Kolkata Knight Riders vs. Royal Challengers Bangalore (April 18, 2008) – This was one of the most thrilling matches because almost every cricketer was playing at their peak. Brendon McCullum was the show’s star as he broke a then-world record by scoring 141 runs. KKR beat RCB by scoring 222 total runs, mainly due to his efforts.
- Mumbai Indians vs. Kings XI Punjab (October 18, 2020) – With the Indians led by Rohit Sharma and the Kings led by KL Rahul, these two teams played a back-and-forth match where they exchanged the lead until KXIP secured the win because of Mayank Agarwal’s stellar play.
The cricket culture in India
There is no bigger sport in India than cricket. Almost any Indian youngster dreams of being a professional cricketer who plays in the IPL. This kind of culture is what draws people to the IPL. Since India has the reputation of being the world’s biggest cricket hub, fans are interested in seeing the sport being played at the highest level.
Massive fan following
Stadiums are always filled with fans in IPL matches, and it is evident that the players love the spotlight. They feel like the biggest attractions in the country, which motivates them to play at their peak level. Feeling the love from the fans is a special feeling, making the IPL appear more appealing.
If you still encounter people asking questions about ‘why Premier League and cricket in general extremely popular in India?’, the passion you see in the IPL should be a good sign that the league has proven its worth as a top attraction in cricket.