The decision to hold a public, televised player auction for the fourth season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) was presumably designed to create some positive publicity for a league for whom 2010 was something of an annus horribilis.
As in 2008, television news channels fawned over the immense sums spent, while the auction itself contained much more suspense and drama than an IPL match.
Yet the auction was profoundly illuminating about the true nature of the IPL as a sports league and as a business.
It gave the lie to the claims often made by franchise owners and BCCI alike of the desire to create a world-class sports product in India, and illustrated some much more fundamental truths about the society in which the IPL operates.
Image: Owner of the Mumbai Indians, Nita Ambani.
Text: Keshava D Guha, Business Standard
The author is a student at Harvard University