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WPL franchises won't partner with cryptocurrency, betting, real money, tobacco sectors: BCCI

Indian cricket's governing body has, however, allowed teams to associate with fantasy sports companies.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has issued a directive to the Women's Premier League (WPL) franchises, stating that they are not allowed to form any commercial partnerships or associations with businesses involved in cryptocurrencies, betting, gambling, real money, or tobacco.

The franchises are, however, permitted to form associations with fantasy sports companies. The BCCI has cautioned that any violation of these regulations may result in punitive action and has instructed the franchises to submit copies of all commercial agreements 10 days before the start of the WPL season.

The first season of the WPL will be held from March 4-26.

"No franchisee shall undertake a partnership or any kind of association with an entity that is in any way connected/related to an entity that is involved/operates, directly or indirectly, in the betting/gambling/real money gaming/tobacco sector. The franchisees may engage in partnerships with entities in the fantasy sports sector," states the BCCI advisory.

It has issued similar guidelines for cryptocurrency and surrogate advertising.

This directive is consistent with the government's policy, prohibiting betting sites. The Supreme Court views fantasy sports as a test of skills, rather than luck.

In the past, FairPlay and 1XBET India have advertised during the Asia Cup. Parimatch is the official partner of the Indian Premier League (IPL) team Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). It is the integrated partner of Vivo Pro Kabaddi, the principal sponsor of the Indian Super League (ISL) team Chennaiyin FC and has also signed a sponsorship deal with Rajasthan Warriors, one of the six teams in the Ultimate Kho Kho League.

While all of them are betting companies, they advertised themselves through their news platforms or blogs.

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