KalingaTV News Network
Mumbai: The 11th edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket is all set to kick off at Wankhede Stadium here on Saturday evening. The cash-rich tournament will continue till May 27.
Defending Champions Mumbai Indians led by Rohit Sharma and two-time winners Chennai Super Kings led by Mahindra Singh Dhoni will feature in the season’s opening match, scheduled to begin at 8 PM.
Before the match, Bollywood heartthrob Hrithik Roshan, Ranveer Singh, Jacqueline Fernandez , Varun Dhawan, Tamannaah Bhatia and others will perform for the IPL opening ceremony at the Wankhede Stadium.
Former Australia captain Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner were banned from Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad respectively following the ball-tampering scandal.
Ajinkya Rahane will lead Rajasthan instead, while New Zealander Kane Williamson will skipper Hyderabad as the lone foreigner leading an IPL team.
The leading run-getter among captains in the history of the IPL, Gautam Gambhir will be seen captaining Delhi Daredevils this year instead of Kolkata Knight Riders.
Dinesh Karthik, whose scintillating performance helped India to clinch Nidahas Cricket Trophy in Colombo last month, will lead the Kolkata Knight Riders. Yuvraj Singh will wear the pink and silver of Kings XI Punjab.
However, the leading wicket-taker of the league, Lasith Malinga will not feature in the tournament as he went unsold during the auction.
The Decision Review System (DRS) has also been introduced in the 2018 edition. For the first time in the IPL’s history, a five-day transfer window has been allowed in the middle of the tournament, where uncapped players who have featured in two or fewer games, to be picked up by other teams to boost its reserves.
Last September, the league sold its media rights to Star India for $2.52 billion, the biggest television deal the game has seen.