IPL-Style Golf League Launches, With Four Major Champions Already Signed Up
Professional golfer Shiv Kapur, in collaboration with a sports management firm promoter Neeraj Sareen, "launched a franchisee-based golf league, on the lines of the Indian Premier League on Friday," according to THE HINDU. Kapur said, "The idea behind the Golf Premier League is to create a fast-paced, franchisee-based golf competition that has a shorter format and will be telecast live. It will not only help popularise the game but also offer an opportunity for youngsters to play with world class golfers." He added that the league "will have golf legends, European and Asian superstars playing alongside top Indian talent." The tournament will have day and night rounds and will be a 14 hole stroke-play for prizes worth $4M (THE HINDU, 1/4). In New Delhi, Aabhas Sharma noted the GPL's format "is similar to that of IPL." There are eight city-based teams, there will be player auctions, "and there will be all the razzmatazz that IPL first brought to a sporting event." The shot clock will be changed to allow each golfer 30 seconds to take a shot. Kapur admitted that he "plagiarised from IPL," as well as from the NBA and NFL. Six out of the eight franchisees have already been sold for a three-year period: Haryana, Punjab, Delhi, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and Mumbai. One int'l franchise for Colombo, which is owned by Sri Lanka cricket captain Mahela Jayawardene, has also been sold (BUSINESS STANDARD, 1/5). STUFF's Simon Plumb noted there are four Major champions up for auction in the "multimillion-dollar, IPL-style golf league": New Zealand's Michael Campbell, Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke, Argentine Angel Cabrera and American Rich Beem (STUFF, 1/6).