Who Watches IPL
I started following Cricket listening to Radio Commentary. I remember we had a Transistor that picked Short Wave. I still remember listening to commentary of 1979 India vs England played at Oval when Gavaskar scored 221 in the 4th innings. We started having Television around 1982 during the Asian Games hosted in India. We did not have a Color Television at home in 1983 and I remember watching the final in one of my friends place at Ashok Nagar, Chennai. We had only one Channel those days, maybe the additional Metro channel for shorter duration in a day. We were all watching the match and there was a News Break when my favorite Cricketer Sir Vivian Richards was doing what he does normally, having a free hit with his bat. The News was over and we immediately watched Kapildev taking the catch of Richards and this was followed by India winning the World Cup. This is the Best Moment for India in Cricket according to me. Then, we all had Color Television and it was 1985 Benson and Hedges. It was fun watching Cricketers on Color Jersey, Stump Mic and listening to the commentary of Richie Benaud, Tony Greig etc.., We might forget taking the text book to school but not the transistors when there is a Test Match or One Day Match.
After 1985 we saw some of our favorite Cricketers retire and this brought Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Saurav Ganguly and Anil Kumble. After the arrival of Sachin and others One Day Matches started getting popular and still Test Match was the Best. The one knock that I will never forget is the Sandstorm at Sharjah followed by Sachin Storm and the expression on the faces of Aussie Cricketers. This is the Best One Day Innings I have watched in Cricket. We loved cricket so much that we used to go to Chepauk to watch a match, watch it on TV forgetting what is happening around us and most importantly watching with friends bursting crackers to celebrate.
When these players were retiring or about to retire we had the launch of Indian Premier League, IPL. These were the days I stopped watching or following Cricket. I today cant tell the playing XI of India's Test or One Day team. I strongly believe too much of anything is bad and this applies to Cricket too. Luckily I already started following various other sports like F1and MotoGP and am a big fan of Tennis always. Hence, I started watching more of Tennis, F1 and MotoGP and saying Good Bye to Cricket became easier.
According to me the ideal format for Cricket is Test or One Day. In F1 or MotoGP we have the skill of drivers to win a race. In Tennis we have the skill of the individual player to make it competitive. Cricket is a game which is played by 11 in the fielding side versus 2 Batsman on the crease and hence, 20 overs match which resulted in IPL may not be the correct format. Cricket is always fun if it is Test or One Day, What I also don't understand is whether someone has the time to watch a match every day.
I have enjoyed Cricket the Most and I Wish we have lesser 20:20 Matches and more of Test or One Day. I have already started planning about my retirement and Cricket must be the ideal company for me. :)