‘The Badminton Association of India (BAI) has sought to clear the doubts of franchise owners in the wake of the governing body’s pending court cases with sporty solutionz ahead of the Premier Badminton League (PBL).
The BAI president Himanta Biswa Sarma has written a letter to all franchise owners, including Bengaluru Blasters, after they sought clarification regarding the legal cases that are going on in Delhi High Court and its potential impact on PBL, and also whether all teams were paying the franchisee fee.
“Over the last few days, a number of rumours are being spread about the Premier Badminton League. I would urge you to ignore them as there is no element of truth in them. I must stress that PBL is going to be held as per announced and scheduled dates and there is no truth in any of the rumours with respect to the uncertainty regarding the hosting of the League,” the BAI president said.
“I would like to share with you that I have personally written to all the stakeholders in the PBL, including the team owners, PBL’s official license holder SportzLive, official broadcasters Star Sports and all the sponsors, and they understand the real situation. They are fully behind BAI and we are all moving smoothly towards the world’s richest badminton league.”
BAI, under former president Late Akhilesh Das Gupta, had terminated the contract with Sporty Solutionz after the first edition of the Indian Badminton League in 2013.
The BAI then launched the new version ‘Premier Badminton League’ after joining hands with new promoters SportzLive in 2016.
Sporty filed a case at the Delhi High Court claiming that BAI had violated the terms of contract and sough compensation.
Sporty was awarded a compensation of Rs 2.5 crore following an arbitration process which upheld the termination but asked the BAI to compensate them for not following proper procedure.
Sporty, however, challenged that verdict in the Delhi High Court and sought a stay on the PBL till the issue is settled.
The hearing of the case is scheduled for December 11, while the third edition of the Premier badminton League (PBL) is set to held from December 23 to January 14.
Given the situation, Bengaluru Blasters wrote to PBL, suggesting a joint meeting involving BAI, PBL and the owners.
SportzLive Managing Director Atul Pande said the league would go ahead as planned and there were no real concerns and the court case will have no bearing on the league.
“Our property is PBL which is separate contract awarded by BAI. So the court case between BAI and Sporty Solutionz will have no bearing on the league and it will go ahead as per planned. We have sort out all issues, ” Pande told PTI.
The third edition of the Premier Badminton League will open with a clash between PV Sindhu’s Chennai Smashers and Saina Nehwal’s Awadhe Warriors on December 23.
Eight teams to take part in the PBL are Awadhe Warriors, Bengaluru Blasters, Chennai Smashers, Delhi Dashers, Hyderabad Hunters and Mumbai Rockets.
Two new teams — Ahmedabad Smash Masters and Guwahati Eastern Warriors — are set to be part of the third edition of PBL.