Azharuddin bats a new innings in the Karnataka Premier League

August 18, 2018

With the Karnataka Premier League Season Six underway, here's a YS Weekender exclusive with cricketing legend Mohammad Azharuddin

One of the most explosive and loved forms of cricket, the T-20, which made its mark more than a decade ago, has without a doubt, taken over the cricketing world!

From the World Cup, to local tournaments, it’s clearly the most sought-after format of cricket. With India establishing themselves as the champions of the first ever T20 World Cup back in 2007, the T20 fever continues to sweep the nation. The big win paved way for a huge market for T20 in India, with the Indian Premier League, subsequently followed by the other countries having a league of their own.

While the IPL dominates the world of cricket in India, the format was quickly adapted by all tournaments, across states, cities and every nook and corner. Karnataka was the first to be bitten by the T20 bug, as it was the first state in India to have a big form of the tournament. Started in 2009, Karnataka Premier League is the second oldest T20 tournament in the country, after the IPL.

To date, KPL has roped in some of the best cricketing talent, with six seasons and eight teams. The sixth season of the Karnataka Premier League kick-started on August 15 of this year. And just like any other T20 tournament, KPL 2018-19, started their innings with a lot of buzz, glamour, big names and renowned players.

We caught up with Mohammad Azharuddin, former Indian cricket team captain and the brand ambassador of Bijapur Bulls, who were the runners up last year. 

 

On being asked his take on the T20 format, here’s what the veteran had to say, “It has definitely produced a lot of very good players and given them instant recognition who would have otherwise taken at least two-year years to make their mark. I think T20 is here to stay.”

‍Mohammad Azharuddin

Although, back in his time, there was no T20 format, he still enjoys the sport and is now actively involved with the sport, more so as the face of the Bijapur Bulls team.  When asked what’s in store for the Bulls, here’s what he had to say, “The plan is to win. There’s no substitute. We came very close last year, but this time we should go for the win.”

Azharuddin was known was his batting skills, and he excelled in both ODI and Test Cricket, but we did ask him what was his favourite format, and his answer was, “You’re basically known when you play a test series. I would definitely opt for playing test matches over one-days.”

As for the glamour and glitz that T20 has bought to the sport, he says, 

“The glamour is always a good thing to have. With sports you always get glamour, with the teams performing so well, money flow, players being benefited and looked after so well by the board, I think glamour has to be there.”

With Starpick, an online fantasy gaming platform coming in, it adds much more to the growing audience and market that KPL has set. The “Karnataka T20” on their platform gives the audience a much more active and engaging form of the sport in the virtual world. 

It’s no longer about sitting at your homes or the stadium and watching the sport, there’s a whole big package of entertainment that it brings to you.

Who do you think will be crowned winners of the Karnataka Premier League this year? Let us know in the comments!

 

 

 

 

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