Former Indian batting maestro Sunil Gavaskar has lashed out at critics of the best T20 league in the world, the Indian Premier League (IPL).
The Mumbai legend, who is also associated with the IPL as a commentator, was recently asked about the criticism copped by the cash-rich league around the globe. Also, Indian cricket is often blamed for tampering with the soul of the game.
Further, the IPL is debated for its indulgence into the world of glitz and glamour, especially with its celebrity and industrialist involvement.
To which, Sunny categorically singled out the boons IPL has brought into the small-scale industry, providing people with numerous job opportunities.
“They [the critics] only see the money aspect that is there in the IPL. They don’t look at what the IPL does. I think it all boils down to jealousy. Only those who do not benefit from it, do not get anything from the IPL criticise it,” Gavaskar told Boria Mazumdar on India Today.
“There are so many people whose livelihoods are there because of the IPL. It can be the guys who are at the grounds who paint people’s faces, people who are making those shirts that are sold outside the stadiums just before a match, or the vendors who have food stalls at the stadium. There is an entire cottage industry around the IPL,” he added.
Gavaskar tags IPL as a ‘soft target’
Furthermore, Gavaskar claimed that IPL is a soft target for several entities who want to be famous on the Internet. “Somebody wants to be a little famous on the Internet, then you target the IPL. The IPL is a soft target.” the cricket -turned-commenter reckoned.
In the end, Gavaskar signed off by rubbishing the claims of critics, who accuse Indian cricket of fondling with the ‘interest of the game’.
“An argument people opposed to the IPL give is, we know Indian cricket and we are thinking of the good of Indian cricket. Oh, I see, so you are the only ones who are going to be sitting in judgement and telling us what is good for Indian cricket. Of course, not,” Gavaskar concluded.