Neither IPL nor any individual is bigger than cricket

A critic of the event since its inception, former England captain Nasser Hussain has once again lashed out at the IPL and said the recent controversy surrounding the league has proved that no tournament was bigger than the game.

Hussain said IPL has acquired the size of a "monster" by the sheer magnitude of the money involved and criticised its suspended commisioner Lalit Modi for tying to become bigger than the game.

"The biggest lesson cricket can learn from the allegations swirling around the Indian Premier League is that no tournament should attempt to become bigger than the game itself," Hussain wrote in his column in Daily Mail.

"The IPL has become a monster, if you like, that the Indian powerbrokers created after the successful advent of Twenty20 cricket. There are too many IPL games, there is too much money involved and, most of all, too much self-importance about the IPL and the creator, Lalit Modi.

"I was concerned about the IPL from the start because, to me, the tournament was simply a money-making exercise rather than a legitimate and relevant competition. I could not see how players would have an affinity for their teams and I was concerned that Modi and the IPL were attempting to become bigger than international cricket," he wrote.

The IPL ran into troubled waters earlier this month following Modi`s tweets regarding the shareholding pattern of the new Kochi franchise, which eventually led junior Foreign Minister Shahsi Tharror`s resignation.

Modi was later suspended from the IPL chief`s post and from all BCCI positions after the final of the event`s third edition last Sunday because of alleged financial irregularities and rigging of bids.

The former England batsman said the fanatic cricket fans in India would be deeply hurt by the alleged corruption in IPL.

Hussain said the new interim chairman of IPL, Chirayu Amin has some tough job ahead as he goes about his business to clear up the mess in the high-profile Twenty20 league.

"And while I must stress that what Modi is facing are allegations and no wrong-doing has yet been proved, it is clear that the IPL has to have a good hard look at themselves and their role in the world game," Hussian said.

"IPL creator Lalit Modi is accused of fixing new IPL auctions, among other charges. But those Indian people who love cricket so much will be hurt by suggestions of corruption within the competition. Their pride will be suffering because they thought they had given the cricket world a well-run, very lucrative and appealing tournament.

"It (IPL) can still be that but whoever now takes control of the Indian Premier League must ensure that the tournament takes its rightful place in the calendar without trying to dictate terms to the rest of the world game," Hussain said.

"And it must ensure that it is absolutely squeaky clean from the top downwards. For instance, I am absolutely astonished that the IPL has not had the ICC`s anti-corruption unit on board for the second tournament in South Africa last year," he added.



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