Saudi Arabia approaches BCCI, IPL team owners to set up world's richest T20 league: Reports

The Saudi representatives have reportedly made a request to allow Indian players to play in the new League

By Team KT

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Published: Fri 14 Apr 2023, 6:12 PM

Last updated: Sat 15 Apr 2023, 6:01 PM

The cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL) has gone on to become the world's most popular T20 league but if media reports are to be believed, Saudi Arabia could have the world's richest T20 League in the Gulf region.

Media reports on Friday said that the Saudi Arabian government is planning on setting up the League.

The reports said that representatives of the Saudi Arabian government has proposed plans to set up the League with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), which owns the IPL, as well as with owners of the IPL franchises.

A report in the Melbourne-based The Age said that talks regarding the league have been underway for close to a year now.

Reports suggest that Indian players, who are not allowed to participate in other T20 leagues around the world, could feature in the league. The Saudi representatives have reportedly made a request to allow Indian players to play in the new League.

Saudi Arabia has hosted a number of world-class sports events like the Formula One Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Saudi International Golf, and top boxing bouts, to name a few.

"Our aim is to create a sustainable industry for locals and expats living in the Kingdom and make Saudi Arabia a global cricketing destination," Saudi Arabian Cricket Federation chairman Prince Saud bin Mishal Al-Saud was quoted as saying by Arab News last month.

ICC chairman Greg Barclay had said sometime ago that Saudi Arabia, which has heavily invested in sports tourism, is interested in cricket.

"If you look at other sports they've been involved in, cricket is something I imagine would be attractive to them," Barclay was quoted as saying.

"Given their advance into sport more generally, cricket would work quite well for Saudi Arabia. They're pretty keen to invest in sport, and given their regional presence, cricket would seem a pretty obvious one to pursue," he added.

Saudi Tourism Authority and Aramco are official partners of this year's IPL.

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