Business Standard: US to have its own T20 cricket league

The United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) on Thursday announced exclusive licensing rights for a franchised T20 professional cricket league to Pennsylvania-based sports development company Global Sports Venture. With this, the Gentleman's Game becomes a part of the US sports economy, which is the largest in the world.

Through a $70 million licensing agreement, Global Sports Ventures takes the first step in growing the sport in the United States, which boasts the second highest viewership of cricket in the world behind India ? with more than 1.4 million people tuning in to view the ICC World Twenty20 competition earlier this year. Based on the high demand of the sport, the development company is prepared to generate hundreds of millions of dollars through partnerships, significantly impacting the sports economy.

The deal between the USACA and Global Sports Ventures, LLC will professionalize the game of Cricket in the U.S., providing American athletes the opportunity for a professional career in cricket.

"USACA is thrilled to announce a commercial partnership with Global Sports Ventures LLC to bring this long adored sport stateside, and are confident in their ability to grow the sport in the United States," said Gladstone Dainty, President of USACA. "This multi-year, multimillion dollar licensing agreement will change the way the sport is played, followed, watched and administered, and we're excited to provide for the first time ever annual contracts to our players? both male and female."

Jignesh (Jay) Pandya, President and CEO of Global Sports Ventures said, "The professional sports landscape is a notoriously tough market to break into, but we're confident in the strength of the consumer demand in the US. This agreement allows us to grow the world's second most popular sport right here in our own backyard."

Last month, BCCI organised two T20 matches between Team India and the West Indies in Florida.

Source: Business Standard