x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 17 January 2018

Waiting for IPL fever

A glitch in the IPL ticket sales at Lulu supermarkets came at a cost to some of the most obsessive yet modestly paid fans.

Considering all the world-class sporting events held here each year, such as the planet’s richest horse race in the Dubai World Cup and the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, few events have managed to invoke fervour in parts of the expatriate population quite like the arrival of the Indian Premier League, which will hold 20 cricket matches in the UAE.

The IPL has been displaced from its homeland by the Indian election, to the delight of vast numbers of obsessive cricket fans working here. Many of those, particularly from cricket-mad South Asian countries, work for modest salaries and with tickets from Dh20 a match, the IPL is a rare treat that will not break the bank.

All this makes doubly galling the glitch in the ticket sales at Lulu supermarkets, which were supposed to start on Sunday. The online sales went ahead as planned, selling 20,000 tickets in the first hour, and they finally went on sale at Lulu supermarkets yesterday, a day late.

The least well-off cricket fans were unlikely to have the option to buy their tickets online and also would have wasted their brief amount of recreational time on Sunday. We hope their persistence will be rewarded by seeing fantastic matches once play begins.