The Indian Premier League (IPL) 8 has begun and so have the excitement, thrill, and of course, cricket! Incepted in 2008, the IPL has been one of the most successful T20 tournaments in terms of giving platform to young players. However, the IPL has also been about numerous controversies, which have only upped its popularity quotient. Not that it’s something to be proud about, but how a cricket league, subjected to three or four controversies in every season, gets bigger and bigger is a surprise to all.
Be it players or officials, all have kicked up controversies. Not even the team owners were spared. After a series of controversies, a sport would generally fall from grace, but it’s not the case with IPL. It’s still attracting huge numbers of spectators as well as the best players around the world.
Just as the IPL 8 was about to kick off on 8 April, Kolkata Knight Riders indicated to pull out of the tournament if the BCCI would not clear spinner Sunil Narine’s name. The defending champions were even ready to take the cricket body to court if Narine was suspended. Even after the ICC had cleared his name, BCCI went ahead with other tests in order to let Narine participate in the 2015 IPL.
Let’s have a look at the top IPL controversies:
Match-Fixing and Betting Plagued IPL 6
The most controversial year for IPL was 2013. The sixth edition of the IPL saw Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila of Rajasthan Royals team being involved in spot-fixing. Delhi Police arrested all three along with 11 bookies, out of which one was found to be a former Rajasthan Royals player, Amit Singh. Indian Cricket’s governing body, BCCI, imposed life ban on all found involved in the spot-fixing scandal. The owner of Rajasthan Royals, Raj Kundra, too, underwent an extensive enquiry by the Delhi Police after which he confessed his involvement in betting including his own team.
The incident brought to the fore the fact that other celebrities are also involved in betting and match-fixing. Vindu Dara Singh’s name was involved in betting scandals. The most talked about was the involvement of Chennai Super Kings’ co-owner and son-in-law of former BCCI head N Srinivasan, Gurunath Meiyappan. The CSK tried to keep away from the issue, and as a result Srinivasan was obligated to step aside for fair inquiry and action against the ones involved.
Later, CSK captain, Mahendra Singh Dhoni had filed a Rs 100-crore defamation case against media houses, Zee Media Corporation and News Nation Network, for accusing the India skipper of being involved in match-fixing. He was found not guilty.
Lalit Modi Ousted
Found guilty of fraud, former IPL chairman, was sacked by the BCCI in 2010. Mismanagement of finances in the second edition of IPL was discovered. Corruption charges against Modi along with breach of confidentiality agreement via his tweets disclosing ownership details of now-terminated Kochi Kerala Tuskers franchise paved way for his exit from the IPL.
Slapgate Incident Involving Sreesanth and Harbhajan
This incident between former Mumbai Indians skipper Harbhajan Singh and Kings XI player Sreesanth took place in the inaugural season of IPL in 2008 when Harbhajan slapped Kings XI speedster at the end of a match. After an investigation by the BCCI, an 11-game ban was imposed on Harbhajan. The video wasn’t released and after sobs on field, Sreesanth declared that Harbhajan had elbowed him, not slapped him.
Rave Party Scandal
IPL 2012 was also fraught with controversies. Players of the Pune IPL team – Rahul Sharma and Wayne Parnell – along with other celebrities were detained after being caught in a rave party in Mumbai. Allegedly, they were also found to be under the effect of drugs. Although the players tested positive for drugs, they were let off.
In the same season, RCB’s Luke Pomersbach was held for a molestation case against a woman. The matter was resolved outside the court later on.
SRK’s Wankhede Stadium Brawl
Bollywood star and KKR co-owner Shahrukh Khan found himself in a controversy in IPL 2012. Shahrukh, allegedly drunk, was found using abusive language and involving in a fight with Wankhede Stadium security staff. After the incident, the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) banned Shahrukh Khan’s entry to the stadium for next five years. Even though a lot of personalities have appealed to lift that ban, it is still in effect.
Shahrukh Khan was also held responsible by fans for the exit of Sourav Ganguly from KKR. Shahrukh had later cleared out that it was not his decision. Captain of the squad for the first three seasons of IPL, Ganguly was dismissed from KKR, which was indeed the most controversial, yet an emotional issue. Dada did make a comeback in the fourth season with Pune Warriors.
Ban on Sri Lankan players from competing in Chennai
Star all-rounder and Sri Lankan captain Angelo Mathews missed the Delhi Daredevils opener match against two-time champions Chennai Super Kings on 9 April following the Tamil Nadu government ban on all Sri Lankan players from playing in Chennai due to political reasons. Delhi Daredevils had to suffer due to this decision, which even the governing council of IPL couldn’t deny over the last two seasons.
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IPL 2016 Most Expensive Players
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