A seven-and-a-half minute break will take place halfway through each innings in the IPL.
IPL matches will therefore take three-and-a-quarter hours instead of the usual three.
While organisers are calling this a tactical ‘time out’ it’s simply a way for them to make more money from TV advertising. In March, the IPL signed a fresh $1.8 billion broadcast-rights deal for 10 years with Multi Screen Media (MSM), which operates under the Sony umbrella, and World Sports Group (WSG).
‘It is a move that is driven completely and totally by commercial objectives,’ a senior production official told Cricinfo. ‘It is designed purely to make even more money by selling airtime. Nobody could argue that this adds any cricketing value to the tournament or that it can be in the viewers’ interest, either in the stadium or watching at home.’
Production teams have been told that they need to fit around 33 minutes of advertising into every match.
‘It means taking about 40 seconds of advertising between every over and close to a minute at the fall of every wicket. It’s OK in theory but it hardly ever works like that,’ said the official. ‘If a team only loses two or three wickets, or the match finishes in 15 overs, we are in trouble.’