Johannesburg: Organizers of the Indian Premier League (IPL) have left a bad taste in the mouth of fans by imposing a pouring charge on the sale of alcohol at the Wanderers Ground here on Saturday.
For the sum of 40,000 dollars, a mere 0.001 percent of the IPL"s declared turnover of 2.4 billion dollars, the company who has the tender to sell alcohol at the Wanderers - Events Management - will be allowed to provide thirsty spectators with their tipple.
But what should be an utterly meaningless amount for the IPL is going to put the financial well being of a long-standing service provider to cricket in Johannesburg at risk - Rand 336 800, reports Sports24.
So while the IPL gorges itself on South African hospitality, it is making few friends amongst local cricket administrators or suppliers.
The Gauteng Cricket Board and the suite-holders at the Wanderers were earlier involved in a nasty tussle with the IPL, who had demanded all suites be handed over to them for their use.
Some senior Gauteng Cricket Board executives decided to stay away from the Wanderers in protest, after the IPL, with the tacit approval of Cricket South Africa, threatened to ban the sale of all alcohol at the stadium unless the pouring fee was paid.
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It was also noticeable that only about a quarter of the suites at the ground had people in them, while there were many empty seats in the Unity Stand.
SA Breweries officials said the licensees at the Wanderers make a profit of Rand 6 a beer so, in order to just break even, they will need to sell 56 134 beers in the eight matches to be staged there. So that means over 7 000 drinks per game.Perhaps the small change does matter more to the IPL in these times of recession than Modi and his crew are letting on.