The cricket world reacted with surprise and awe at the staggering amount bid for the two new teams in the India Premier League (IPL), acknowledging that the Indian league has cemented its place as the most successful T20 event in the world.
Even as the other IPL franchises welcomed teams from Ahmedabad and Lucknow to the IPL after RPSG Ventures Ltd. and Irelia Company Pte Ltd. (CVC Capital Partners) won the ownership rights for the two teams. The RPSG Ventures Ltd. were awarded Lucknow as their home base with a winning bid of a whopping IRs 7090 crore. CVC Capital Partners took Ahmedabad as its home base with a second-highest bid of Rs 5625 crore.
BCCI president Sourav Ganguly had set the ball rolling by commenting on the monies bid for the two teams and soon others followed suit.
"It is heartening to see the inclusion of two new teams at such a high valuation, and it reiterates the cricketing and financial strength of our cricket ecos"stem," Ganguly said.
Former Rajasthan Royals captain Shane Warne summed up the mood of the cricket world in his tweet welcoming the two teams.
"Wow! Congratulations to both of the new franchise owners. Staggering amounts of money for each team & shows why cricket has become the 2nd most popular & biggest sport on the planet. $932 & $692 million dollars (USA). Well done to @SGanguly99 & everyone at the @BCCI on the @IPL," the Aussie spin legend wrote.
Former England spinner Monty Panesar poked at the Glazer family, owner of the English club Manchester United, on finishing third in the bidding war, equating it with their team's 5-0 thrashing at the hands of archrivals Liverpool on Sunday.
"5-0 over the weekend and now they come third to pick up a bronze medal #Glazers #CVCCapital #IPLAuction #IPLNewTeam #IPLNewTeams #IPLBidding," Panesar wrote in his tweet.
Former England captain Michael Vaughan saw IPL as the most powerful aspect of the game.
"With the 2 new franchises going for huge numbers, it's now very clear the IPL is the most powerful aspect of the game now. It's inevitable that we will see more games & longer tournaments ., #IPL," he wrote on the micro-blogging site.
Aakash Chopra said the valuation of the new teams has taken the IPL to a whole new level. "So, Ahmedabad and Lucknow it is. The valuation of the new teams has taken the #IPL to a whole new level. Now, the wait to understand the retention rules. I hope that allowing 5 overseas players in the XI is considered as an option for the first 3 years at least," he tweeted.
Former India pacer and current selector RP Singh termed it as a great day for Indian cricket. "Indeed, a great day for Indian cricket because two new teams (the second one from #Ahmedabad, a special connect with that city as well!), we will (have) many young talents getting more chances. Congratulations @BCCI, @SGanguly99 and @JayShah," he wrote.
With each team playing seven home and away matches, there was a lot of speculation on how the format will be run, the total duration of the tournament, and the retention policy ahead of the mega auction.