International Cricket has strongly been associated with playing for one's country - and in a country like India, it has been very much a matter of pride. Cricket connects people; it is the easiest way to strike up a conversation with a stranger (often, stupidly used by some of my friends to flirt with a girl... a girl would rather be interested in Dravid's cute smile than the number of his test wickets). Cricketers are as popular as filmstars in India.
What change will this bring to the status of cricket in India? Here are some things I could come up with:
- Cricket is more crisp now - a match that is short in duration, high on excitement and very accessible to the public in general.
- Some of these teams are actually dream-teams for many cricket fans - and they love to see all of their favourite cricketers playing for the same teams.
- It's glamorous - IPL has surely brought in the craze for cricket that football enjoys in the west.
...especially when news channels air news of 'Ram's footprints spotted'.
... or when movies talk about concepts as novel as love triangles.