afaqs!

Champions League postponed indefinitely

By Sumantha Rathore , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | November 28, 2008
The cricket tournament has been postponed because of the November 26 terrorist attack in Mumbai

Cricket & #BANNER1 & # has not remained unscathed by terror attacks. Following the November 26 terrorist attack in Mumbai, the governing council of the Champions League has decided to postpone the inaugural Champions League 2020 tournament, which was scheduled to start on December 3.

The governing council of the Champions League held an emergency meeting today in Mumbai after consultation with the three founding board members of the tournament - the Board of Cricket Control in India, Cricket Australia and Cricket South Africa - to decide on the fate of the tournament.

The tournament was to be played in Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai from December 3 till December 10. The teams to play were the Western Australian Warriors and Victorian Bushrangers from Australia, the Titans and Dolphins from South Africa, the Middlesex Crusaders from England, the Sialkot Stallions from Pakistan and the Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals from India.

In an official communiqué, Lalit Modi, chairman, Champions League 2020, says, "We held consultations among all the stakeholders, including the founding members, participating teams and members of the governing council, after the unfortunate terrorist attacks in Mumbai. In the best interests of all concerned, it was agreed that the inaugural edition of the league should be postponed."

Raghu Iyer, chief marketing officer, Emerging Media India, owner of the Rajasthan Royals, informs afaqs!, "At the moment, we are concerned about the safety of the few players who have already reached here. We are working for their safe passage back. Once that is done, maybe, we'll look at other things next week after the board decides the dates."

"We had planned cricket melas and other marketing initiatives for the league, but everything is being kept on hold for the moment," adds Iyer.

According to Utkarsh Singh, business development head, Rajasthan Royals, getting all the international players together again will be a tough job because most of them have prior commitments for their countries.

Chennai Superkings has also decided to put all its marketing initiatives on hold till things settle down in the country. Rakesh Singh, the chief marketing officer of the team, says, "Our primary concern at the moment is that our country should be safe - everything comes after that. We have put all the activities planned for the franchise on hold."

Chennai Superkings recently tied up with Peter England Fashions and Retail, Reebok International, Camlin, the writing instruments and art material maker, and Cafe Coffee Day for merchandising deals.

"Our aim was to build hype during the Champions League and take it further for the next season of the IPL (Indian Premier League)," explains Singh.

Apart from merchandising initiatives, the franchise had plans to launch TV commercials, painting competitions and talent hunts to find a player for the team and membership deals for its club.

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