The first match of the 2020 IPL attracted the largest TV audience of any opening fixture of any league in the world, according to one of its lead administrator.
Chennai Super Kings defeated Mumbai Indians in the opening game of the new season on Saturday night in Abu Dhabi.
While, due to coronavirus safety measures, no spectators were allowed in the stands at the Zayed Cricket Stadium, the TV audience was expected to be vast.
On Tuesday, Jay Shah, the secretary of the Cricket Board of Control in India, said the game drew the largest audience in history for the opening match of any domestic league competition.
“The [Dream11 IPL] opening match set a new record,” Shah wrote on social media. “As per BARC, an estimated 20 crore people tuned in to watch the match.
“ Highest ever opening day audience for any sporting league in any country – no league has ever opened this big.
Opening match of #Dream11IPL sets a new record!
As per BARC, an unprecedented 20crore people tuned in to watch the match. Highest ever opening day viewership for any sporting league in any country- no league has ever opened as big as this. @IPL @SGanguly99 @UShanx @DisneyPlusHS
— Jay Shah (@JayShah) September 22, 2020
Owing to the COVID pandemic, with the beginning of the IPL postponed by seven months, as well as the fact that supporters were unable to participate, the TV audience for this competition was expected to be record-setting.
[The broadcasters] are probably expecting the highest IPL rating this season because they think they would be watching on their television sets if supporters don’t show up on the field, “BCCI President Sourav Ganguly said last month.” [The broadcasters] expect the highest IPL rating this season.
Vivo backed out of the Indian Premier League 2020 due to ongoing India-China border standoff
Fantasy sports platform Dream11 won IPL title sponsorship rights with a bid of Rs.222 crores. Dream11 retains the rights for 4 months and 13 days.
According to financial consultant Duff & Phelps, the league’s revenue more than doubled from $3.2 billion in 2014 to $6.8 billion in 2019. In terms of INR, the IPL ecosystem is worth Rs 47,500 crore, with its brand value of 13.5 percent in the tournament’s last edition (2019).
BCCI also roped Unacademy- the edtech unicorn and credit card payment system CRED as ‘private partners’ of IPL after Dream11. Both startups are reported to have paid Rs 40 crore each, allowing only three sponsors to pocket BCCI over Rs 300 Crore. Meanwhile, for IPL, Paytm is the official “Partner of the umpire.”