India is a cricketing nation. People eat and sleep, talk and walk cricket. Agreed.
It is often proclaimed that cricket is the only sport in India. With this statement, however, I beg to differ.
Cricket was one of the first sports to be commercialised in India. Or in other words, it was the driving force for several sports to be commercialised in India.
People want fresh. They want something new and sensational constantly. They want variety, or in other words, product diversification.
Today, the sports business industry is growing and continues to grow as though struck by a non-existent galloping inflation.
Here is a list of the top leagues in India:
Hockey India League
Its first edition took place in 2013 and the next one will be in 2016. It consists of 6 teams and follows a triple round-robin and knock-out format. It has attracted a lot of international and top Indian athletes.
Indian Badminton League
Administrated by the Badminton Association of India, this league was created in 2013. It consists of 6 teams competing in a double round-robin and knock-out format. The player mix has both international and Indian stars, including the likes of Saina Nehwal.
Indian Super League
This league was founded in 2014 and falls under the Asian Football Confederation. It features 8 franchisee teams owned by various sports and Bollywood celebrities. Like the IPL, it gives the opportunity to younger players so play alongside top international ones.
Pro Kabaddi League
Founded in 2014, the league consist of 8 teams representing different cities. It is unique in commercialising the age-old sport of Kabaddi, allowing players to pursue it as a profession. As we witness the second edition of the league, we can be sure that it is only growing in popularity.
World Series Hockey
This professional field hockey competition was started with the objective of re-establishing the sport in India. It was founded in 2012, consists of 8 teams and follows a double round-robin and knock-out format.
Professional sport has been a far-fetched super idealistic and not so realistic career option in India. But times are changing and so is this situation, for the better.
If this trend continues, many childhood dreams will come true and turn into reality; for they’re the ones that are purely from the heart. You want to be a footballer? Be.
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.