Modi's dream yet to take full flight

Interactive tools to woo fans likely


The last week or so proved that the Twenty20 event has its own fan base, but has to traverse a long distance before getting acknowledged as a true global event. The success of the tournament could be measured largely from the crowd turn-out for non-IPL team clashes. The match between Trinidad & Tobago and Somerset at the Chinnaswamy stadium attracted over 15,000 spectators and it could count as a good attendance for two overseas teams with little or no following in India.

It was a similar story in two other venues, Hyderabad and New Delhi, where matches involving non-local teams saw just enough turn-out. The quality of cricket on offer was high in most matches, apart from a couple of low-scoring ones in Feroze Shah Kotla, and ensuring steady flow of good cricket is important for making the event a hit with the crowd.

Modi agreed. “The decision is with fans based on what we deliver -- the cricketing experience, the entertainment experience and the tournament as whole. Building a fan base is always a tough issue,” the League’s Governing Council chairman said.

“The advantage for CL is that many players appearing for foreign clubs have already been known to fans through IPL and international cricket. At the end of the day, we have to make a start and, yes, it will take a few years for the entire concept to take root,” Modi added.

However, there is much more than quality cricket that has to be done to make the Champions League a genuine attraction to Indian spectators, known to insist on variety and quality.

Football clubs in England and Europe engage in lot of activities even in the off-season to keep them fresh in the memory of fans, and these teams go about their task diligently even after being in existence for over a 100 years. They also keep in constant touch with fans through social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.

Modi hinted at them using more widely in the future. “This is nothing new as many sports events across the world use this method to reach out to a wider audience and we might see that here too. This is the new order and we need to go along with the world. The objective is to interact with the fans. I don’t think there is any better tool than such sites and we are taking that route seriously,” he added.

League schedule

* League A: A1, A2 (to be decided after Chargers vs T&T match on Wednesday); New South Wales (B1); Diamond Eagles (B2). 

* League B: Royal Challengers Bangalore (C1), Cape Cobras (C2); Delhi Daredevils (D1), Victoria Bushrangers (D2).



* In League ‘A’ , New South Wales and one team from Group A carry forward two points each.

* In League ‘B’ , Cape Cobras and Victoria Bushrangers carry forward two points each.

* Teams that played each other in the Group phase will not clash again in the League Phase.

* Top two teams from each League qualify for the semifinals.

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