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Market Rate Cricket – Even for a country familiar with the mind-boggling valuation of cricket teams, the numbers are remarkable: Wednesday’s auction of five teams in India’s new women’s cricket league at a hotel in Mumbai produced one of the biggest single-day infusions in women’s sports history.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India, the governing body of one of the sport’s biggest nations, has announced that the five new teams that will form the women’s premier league in March have been sold to local investors. combined price. price over 570 million dollars.

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The size of the deals made headlines: the average price for the teams ($114 million) fell short of estimates for established U.S. leagues such as the W.N.B.A., based on recent sales results, and pointed to the lucrative potential of the women’s game in the global market. richest cricket world. market It has also made the Women’s Premier League the latest attempt by the women’s competition to attract audiences and sponsors and generate profits comparable to the more lucrative men’s tournaments.

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Top women’s cricketers could be the first to benefit, with teams expected to see their salary figures rise again in next month’s auction.

“Today marks a new era where our women cricketers have the platform they deserve to flourish, excel and thrive on the global stage,” Indian star Harmanpreet Kaur wrote on Twitter. “I’m sure you’ll be blown away by the talent we have!”

In establishing the Women’s Premier League, the B.C.C.I. he followed the same playbook he used 15 years ago when he sold eight franchises for the men’s Indian Premier League to private investors.

I.P.L. popularity. has since revolutionized the way cricket is played and watched by popularizing the three-hour Twenty20 format on television. It has also attracted nine-figure investments from a diverse group that includes Indian billionaires, overseas private equity groups and global media giants.

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The most recent I.P.L. expansion franchises were sold for more than $700 million each, and a new media rights deal made the I.P.L. the second most expensive league in the world, after the National Football League, per game.

“This will have a huge impact on the women’s game in India and around the world,” said Mustafa Ghouse, head of JSW, an Indian energy company that was one of the bidders.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India or B.C.C.I. designed the Women’s Premier League as a sister version of the I.P.L. Three of the five franchises went to the I.P.L. to the previous owners. Reliance Industries, which owns the teams Mumbai Indians, spent $112 million to add a Mumbai women’s side to its portfolio. Diageo, which runs the Royal Challengers I.P.L. franchise, delivered a similar amount to the Bangalore team. A joint venture between JSW and infrastructure firm GMR, who together control the Delhi franchise in the I.P.L., successfully put up $99 million for a new women’s team, also based in the capital.

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The other two franchises were won by newcomers to Indian cricket: Adani Group, the conglomerate owned by one of Asia’s richest men, made the highest bid of $158 million for the Ahmedabad-based team, while lender financier Capri Global bought the Lucknow team for $92 million. Both companies had previously been outbid in attempts to buy I.P.L. expansion devices.

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To increase the value of the franchise sale, the Indian governing body announced the sale of media rights to the Women’s Premier League for the first time this month, selling five years of domestic television and digital rights to the tournament in a closed auction. Viacom18 for $116 million. According to Jack Genovese of media research firm Ampere Analytics, who conducted W.P.L. — a month-old championship that has yet to play — the second-most expensive women’s sports league in the world, trailing only the 12-team W.N.B.A.

In addition to the size of the Indian market, Genovese said, “Having franchises in both the men’s and women’s leagues helps build on existing narratives and creates a familiar feel to the WPL.”

A portion of the money raised from the sale of media rights is reinvested in the game through player salaries, helping to ensure the participation of the world’s best players. Although the B.C.C.I. have yet to confirm salary numbers, base prices for players in the auction — a high-stakes market where teams bid on individual players one at a time — are likely to be in the $12,000-$60,000 range. four-week competition. The most in-demand players like Indian internationals Kaur and Shafali Verma and top overseas stars from England and Australia are expected to earn several times the basic salary.

Some critics have expressed concern that W.P.L. through money pouring into women’s cricket. it is disproportionately directed at the handful of people at the top of the sport. “It would be better to have a tournament that explicitly aims to redistribute the wealth of women’s cricket,” said Raf Nicholson, a historian of women’s cricket at England’s Bournemouth University. “But unfortunately, we seem to be following the path set by men, which only enriches the rich.”

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Others argued that any additional funding should be welcomed, especially in a sport where only a few hundred players worldwide can afford to play professionally.

“In many countries, including established places like South Africa, the national board cannot afford to keep their best players,” said Daniel Norcross, who has worked on the BBC’s women’s cricket broadcasts for many years. “Franchise leagues springing up around the world offer a fitter life. It helps more than just the country running the league. India’s entry makes a big difference. Suddenly sports becomes a viable career”.

A number of prominent international players, such as South Africa’s Lizelle Lee, have retired from the international game to appear in short-lived tournaments such as the One Hundred in England and the Women’s Big Bash League in Australia. Now W.P.L. best salaries offered. is significantly larger than even these events.

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In an effort to ensure the continued viability of the new Indian Women’s League, the winning owners have been given 10 years to pay the initial franchise fees to the B.C.C.I., while the governing body agrees to hand over 80 percent of the franchise’s revenues for the first five. year. year’s media rights agreement with the teams. Like the I.P.L., teams retain most of their domestic revenue, which is generated from sponsorships and ticket and merchandise sales. A similar revenue-sharing model was one of the reasons why every I.P.L. the team managed to stay profitable through the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Challenge B.C.C.I. and Viacom18 must ensure the women’s tournament gets attention, but both they and the team’s owners say they believe there is an appetite for women’s cricket: for example, more than 47,000 people watched India play Australia in Mumbai in December. national record. And cultural historian Boria Majumdar noted that crowds scaled the walls to watch women’s exhibition matches held before the I.P.L. games from previous years.

The five-team competition may just be the beginning. B.C.C.I. indicated plans to bring in more teams after at least nine bidders lost the first five franchises. Norcross proposed that the B.C.C.I. decided to keep the original W.P.L. to five teams because he was concerned about the depth of talent. But he also said that “any worries go away very quickly when the show is on.”

“With up to five foreign players on each side and several Indian internationals,” he added, “there is more than enough talent to create real quality games. And that leads to expansion.” WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve officials earlier this month thought it would be appropriate to raise the benchmark interest rate “relatively quickly,” and some said a hike at the Fed’s next meeting in December would be a way to preserve the Fed’s credibility.

1-2 published on Wednesday. Minutes of the November meeting show that Fed officials have moved closer to raising interest rates for the first time in nearly a year. Some argued that if the Fed did not raise rates at its December meeting, it could damage the central bank’s credibility, given the many signals it had sent that a hike was imminent.

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Private economists expect the Fed to raise interest rates on the 13th-14th. at the December meeting by a quarter point of its base interest rate.

At its November meeting, the central bank left its benchmark interest rate unchanged in the range of 0.25 percent to 0.5 percent, where it has been all year. Few expected an interest rate hike then. Economists believed the Fed would not want to risk destabilizing financial markets by raising interest rates just before voters go to the polls.


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