Is the IPL the Best T20 Competition in the World?

Rohit Sharma kisses the IPL trophy

That the IPL is the richest T20 competition in the world isn’t up for debate.

You only need to look at the value of the TV deals and the prices paid for players at the auction to know that.

But is the IPL the best T20 league in the world?

We certainly believe it is and we’re going to explain why, by looking at its players, its format and the extra factors that contribute to making it one of the biggest and best sports tournaments on the planet.

There are certainly a lot of factors in play that make it the best T20 in the world and why betting on the IPL is way more fun than any other cricket league!

Read on and we’re confident you’ll end up agreeing with us.

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All the world’s best overseas players are in the IPL

This is certainly a good starting point.

Every year the world’s best T20 players are retained by their current sides, traded to another franchise or released for other teams to bid for them.

If a young T20 superstar emerges from somewhere who has never played IPL before, such as Australian Josh Philippe or Englishman Tom Banton, he’ll enter himself in the auction and no doubt someone will get the big chequebook out and snap them up.

We’ve listed out the 5 best new overseas players in the IPL if you’re looking to spot some up and coming talent!

Why do so many overseas players start in the IPL?

The big reason why so many of the game’s overseas stars are in the IPL is because of the rule that says that any team can field four foreign players in any given match.

In the Big Bash in Australia or the T20 Blast in England, for example, teams are only allowed two overseas players.

So, at best you’ll see four world-class overseas players in action, rather than potentially eight, as might happen in an IPL game.

And it’s not just about the quantity, it’s also about the quality.

Quality overseas players make a difference!

IPL sides have huge budgets to bid for the world’s top players in the annual auction and the money on offer is just too good for any T20 star to turn down.

So whereas brilliant players like Ben Stokes, Sunil Narine, Quinton de Kock or Kane Williamson may not bother signing up with a Big Bash or Pakistan Super League side because the money on offer isn’t that great, they’re more than happy to pocket life-changing fortunes for a few week’s work in the IPL.

Ben Stokes playing during the IPL: One reason why the IPL is the best T20 competition in the world

It’s not solely about the money, either.

Players like Kevin Pietersen and AB de Villiers have spoken at length about how sharing a dressing room with fellow legends of the game was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that made them superior players and helped them to better understand certain aspects of the game by talking, training and playing with the very best.

Of course, it’s also about watching the Indian stars play but that base is well-covered because…

The scheduling is spot on

Other T20 series take place in the middle of their respective country’s summer when the national side is in a Test match or ODI action.

That means English fans get little or no chance to watch stars like Stokes or Joe Root in their national T20 league, the same being true of players like David Warner and Mitchell Starc in Australia.

When the IPL is on in India, the national side doesn’t play because everything stops for the IPL.

So fans get to watch the likes of Virat Kohli, Ravi Jadeja, Rohit Sharma or KL Rahul play every single IPL match.

With most other international teams also stopping for the IPL, it means there are no other cricketing distractions.

So you can give the IPL your full attention as it goes on its quest to find the season’s most deserved winner.

Which it does because…

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It’s the fairest competition

It was the IPL who first cottoned on to the fact that teams who perform admirably in the Group Stages deserve to be better rewarded for their efforts than sides who also finish in the Top 4 but below them.

And so the format was introduced whereby the Top 2 in the Group Stages get two chances to qualify for the final, whereas the third and fourth-placed teams need to win two matches to get there.

It’s a formula that has since been copied in the Big Bash and Caribbean Premier League.

But it was the IPL that started it.

They put on the best show

One of the secrets to boxing’s success is its ability to hype up the biggest fights.

From the trash-talking among the fighters to the televised weigh-ins and the fighters’ promoters giving their penny’s worth on what might happen, by the time the fight comes about, everyone is excited.

The IPL is a bit like that as well.

There’s the live-streamed/televised auction, the extravagantly-named teams, the dancing cheerleaders at the ground and the deliberately over-the-top commentary – all there to make every match seem like a matter of life or death.

And to the thousands of fans who flock to the stadium, it’s just that.

Which brings us to the last reason and it’s a big one.

Cheerleaders at the IPL add extra entertainment to help make it the best T20 competition in the world

It has the best fans

If it’s polite applause in between a sip from a gin-and-tonic and a bite of an egg and cress sandwich that you like to take part in, the suggestion is to go and watch a Test match at Lord’s.

But if you like to live the drama of a volatile match, wear a replica shirt of your favourite team to games, shout as loud as you can in support and celebrate each wicket and boundary like you’ve just won the lottery, then go and watch a live IPL match.

IPL fans are the most vocal and passionate in the world.

Supporters of Chennai and Bangalore are particularly raucous and passionate in equal measure.

They certainly add something to the whole experience, not least because the players raise their games to try to bring a smile to their faces.

That pretty much covers it!

It features the finest players on the pitch, incredibly passionate fans off it and the most excitable pundits in the commentary box telling us all back home what’s going on.

Add the presence of all the local stars in the tournament and a format that rewards Group Stage consistency and there’s no doubting it: the IPL is the best T20 competition in the world and one of the best cricket betting experiences around.

That’s unlikely to change anytime soon.

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