The Indian Premier League Governing Council decided on an expansion to ten franchises from 2011. In an auction on March 22, 2010, Sahara Group bid USD 370 million – the most – to acquire a team. They based it out of Pune and named it Pune Warriors India. The other franchise was acquired by Kochi Cricket Pvt Ltd, a consortium of six companies, including Anchor Earth, Rendezvous Sports World, and Parinee Developers, among others. The franchise, worth USD 333.2 million, was based out of Kochi. IPL Controversies- Part 6: ‘Fake IPL Player’ Incident in 2009.
So far, so good. The problem arose when they decided to call it Indi Commandos. This would have made it the first IPL franchise to not have any city, state, or even zone attached to its name. The owners also wanted to shift base to Ahmedabad to avoid the high entertainment tax in Kerala.
Both incidents led to criticism on social media, especially from the Keralites, both local and settled worldwide. They demanded a change in team name and logo as well as the venue.
Changing the name to Indi Commandos Kerala did not suffice. The owners had to conduct a poll on their website. There were two words to be chosen. The first, between Kochi and Kerala; the second, from Titans, Commandos, Tigers, Tuskers, Heroes, and United. Tuskers was an obvious winner, while the owners decided to keep both Kerala and Kochi in the name. IPL Controversies- Part 5: KKR Removes Sourav Ganguly as Captain in 2009 After Internal Conflict.
The decision to move Kochi Tuskers Kerala to Ahmedabad was also aborted once the Corporation of Cochin waived half the tax amount.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 08, 2021 05:04 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).