Sahara pulls out of IPL, again

2013-05-21 22:27
Pune Warriors (AFP)
New Delhi - The owners of the Pune Warriors franchise, Sahara India, have pulled out of the IPL over financial differences with the BCCI.

ESPNCricinfo's website
reports that the problem stems from the valuation of the annual franchise fee Pune has to pay the BCCI.

Sahara bought the Pune franchise in 2010 for $370 million, the highest price paid for any of the IPL franchises.

IPL chairperson, Rajiv Shukla confirmed the news.

"Yes, it (Pune Warriors) has pulled out. As per the rules and procedure of the BCCI if a franchise fails to pay the fee then we encash the franchise's bank guarantee. We are extremely sad by their decision to pull out. This should not have happened," Shukla said.

Pune Warriors coach Allan Donald was caught off-guard by the decision.

"This is a massive surprise to me," Donald said.

"I'm shocked because we had spoken, not in great detail but loosely, about prospects for next year. The owners were really upbeat for next season and the next three years because next year we'd have new contracts, new players. We spoke about the possibility of building a culture within the team."

Donald was also a part of the team when the owners decided to pull the franchise out of the IPL before the auction last year

This is the second time Sahara have pulled out of the IPL; they quit on the day of the 2012 auction and withdrew from sponsorship of the Indian team. However, Sahara have stated that they will continue to sponsor the Indian cricket team until the end of December.

Sahara released a statement explaining its dispute with the BCCI over franchise fees.

"In 2010, Sahara had bid Rs 1700 crore ($370 million) for the IPL franchise on the basis of revenue calculation on 94 matches. But we got 64 matches only," it added.

"We and the Kochi team [also bought at the 2010 auction] immediately protested and requested the BCCI to reduce the bid price proportionately for viable IPL proposition. Nothing was heard. We waited with confidence that such a sports body should have sportsmanship spirit," it said.

Pune Warriors finished eighth in the current IPL season, one place above bottom team, Delhi Daredevils, only winning four out of their 16 matches.

Read more on:    pune warriors  |  ipl  |  cricket

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