ZEE Network UK has snapped up the television rights for the first ever badminton league – Indian Badminton League (IBL), which is set to air on ZEE Cinema.
The IBL, which will be richest prize-money badminton tournament in the world will be held across six major cities in India from 14th – 31st August.
The IBL Finals will be held in Mumbai on 31st August while Hyderabad and Bangalore will get to host a semifinal tie each in the $1-million (approx Rs 5.5-crore) purse League. New Delhi will host the grand Opening Ceremony of the IBL, featuring international and national star-cast, on 13th August, followed by the first round rubbers on 14th – 15th August.
The six franchise-based city teams featuring in the first edition of the IBL are as follows ��� Hyderabad HotShots (Hyderabad) , Rajdhani Smashers (Delhi), Mumbai Masters (Mumbai), Karnataka Kings (Bangalore), Pune Vijetas (Pune) and Lucknow Warriors (Lucknow). The names of the owners of the six Franchises will be announced on May 28 in New Delhi.
On this occasion, Badminton Association of India President Dr Akhilesh Das Gupta said, “The preparations for the Indian Badminton League are in full swing. I�۪m confident the IBL Opening Ceremony will be a breath-taking extravaganza with the whole world watching it live.”
Other than movies, ZEE Cinema has previously only aired sport such as cricket and hockey. This is the first time any UK Asian broadcaster will show badminton.