IPL 2020 : All India Radio wants to air IPL 2020 commentary, waiting for BCCI’s nod

The All India Radio (AIR) is trying to acquire radio commentary rights for the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2020). According to the Prasar Bharti, they have officially requested the Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) for the radio rights but are yet to hear from the Indian board. 

According to Shashi Shekhar Vempati, CEO of Prasar Bharati, he has personally written to the BCCI president to grant AIR the Radio Rights for IPL 2020 so that fans who does not have access to the television can enjoy the IPL commentary via radio.  

“I have personally written to the President of BCCI to consider expanding the current MoU arrangement. We already have the radio rights for the BCCI matches in India. We have requested them to include the IPL in the understanding so that radio listeners get to follow the matches. In this Covid-19 pandemic situation, it will also be in public interest. We hope they will get back to us soon” Vempati said.

It is worth noting that last year, BCCI and AIR had entered into an agreement under which AIR has been granted rights of live audio commentary rights for all the international and domestic matches played in the country for a period of two years.

Cricket commentary was back on the national radio broadcast after a gap of five years in 2019. According to the understanding AIR has a right to do audio commentary on all international games in India besides the select men’s and women’s domestic matches, such as the Ranji Trophy Zonal, and games in the Women’s Challenger Series, Duleep Trophy, Deodhar Trophy among others. But IPL was included in the agreement. Now AIR has requested for the inclusion of IPL rights as well in the agreement. 

“Cricket fans are in every nook and corner of the country, even at places where broadcast reach is still negligible. Radio commentary can serve these audiences and others”, declared Vempati. 

BCCI is yet to respond to the AIR’s request and with very little time left for IPL 2020 to begin, it is highly unlikely that RADIO Commentary will be possible in this edition of IPL

IPL 2020 begins on September 19th with opening match scheduled between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings
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