Indian Premier League (IPL) is the brainchild of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) or to be precise, Lalit Modi. It is a city-based Twenty20 league sanctioned by the International Cricket Council (ICC). IPL has nine teams and Rajiv Shukla is the current Chairman of IPL.
The sixth edition of IPL (IPL 6) will get under way on April 3 and the final will be played on May 26. In all, 76 matches will be played with the title decider scheduled for Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
Kolkata Knight Riders are the defending champions. They had defeated Chennai Super Kings in 2012's final.
This year, we have a new team in Sunrisers Hyderabad. The Hyderabad franchise have new owners in Sun Network after Deccan Chargers were terminated last year by BCCI.
Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kings XI Punjab, Kolkata Knight Riders, Deccan Chargers, Delhi Daredevils and Rajasthan Royals were the first eight franchise teams that took part in the tournament that was inaugurated on April 18, 2008 in Bangalore.
In the year 2011, Pune Warriors India and Kochi Tuskers Kerala joined as new franchisees to the IPL family, making it a 10-team league. However, in 2011, Kochi was terminated by BCCI for breaching terms of agreement.
For 2012, the fifth edition of IPL, there were 9 teams. Chennai Super Kings are the most successful team with two consecutive trophies won in 2010 and 2011. The first edition in 2008, was won by Rajasthan Royals, followed by Deccan Chargers in 2009, when the tournament was hosted in South Africa.
Each team will have a pool of 33 players, with a maximum of 11 overseas players and a minimum of 14 Indians and 6 Under-22 players. However, only a maximum of 4 foreign players can be included in the playing XI.
IPL teams are coached by some of the big names in international cricket. Ray Jennings, Stephen Fleming, Eric Simons, Darren Lehman, Robin Singh, Adam Gilchrist, Trevor Bayliss, Shaun Pollock, Jonty Rhodes, Tom Moody are part of the coaching staff with different teams.
Sachin Tendulkar, MS Dhoni, Virender Sehwag, Kevin Pietersen, Gautam Gambhir, Adam Gilchrist, Rahul Dravid, Zaheer Khan, Albie Morkel, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Lasith Malinga, Suresh Raina, Michael Hussey, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravinchandran Ashwin, Harbhajan Singh, Shane Watson, Michael Clarke, Yusuf Pathan are some of the major players taking part in the fifth season of the IPL.