Days after submitting his report on the IPL spot-fixing scandal, Justice Mukul Mudgal said the much-talked-about event is not a problem child for India’s cricket board, but a cash cow.
Speaking at the Idea Exchange programme of the The Indian Express, Justice Mudgal said, “I wouldn’t say IPL is a problem child for the BCCI, but it’s a cash cow. Yes, it does pester with controversies. It started with after match parties, which I believe now are being reduced. That’s where, many times, the contact with undesirable people happen.”
According to the former Chief Justice, the tournament does give youngsters a lot of lucrative opportunities, but it is important to channelise the money and ensure the younger lot keeps composure.
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“IPL does make the youngsters rub shoulders with the celebrities in cricket, teaches them temperament and gives them money. I have nothing against players getting money, it’s a good thing. Only thing is it should be channelised.
“If you see the situation of a youngster who is suddenly exposed to glamorous people, who he has only seen on the television, it is not easy to keep composure. This is where we need some stability. So yes there are issues with the IPL, and I’m sure they can be improved,” points out Mudgal.
Still looking for the romance in the gentlemen’s game, Mudgul feels the shorter format has severely affected the Tests.
“IPL format has hurt Test cricket. I don’t think players can play even proper session today, let alone a whole day. So I think we need to learn from Brendon McCullum and from Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman who played the entire day without getting out during the famous Kolkata Test,” said Mudgul.
An alumnus of the Modern Barakhamba Road, where sports is a must in the curriculum, Mudgul, though by the compulsory after-school routine, started his love-affair with sports early in his life. Despite being embroiled in all sorts of controversies, he still believes that the sports will have the last laugh.
“My interest for sports will never go. I can get disappointed by certain factors, but I’m an optimistic by nature. I think sports will triumph over all the obstacles. That’s the way I look at it. Contrary to popular perception, I don’t think matches are routinely fixed,” said Mudgal.