No matter what anyone says, I firmly believe that as long as India loves cricket, IPL will continue to be a huge hit.

Which basically means forever. 

ESPN Cricinfo

People will always turn up to the stadiums, always tune in to sports channels and always have their loyalties fixed – to players, if not to teams.

However, there are times when I think of the first season of the Indian Premier League. 

Sports Craazy

Another firm belief: Nothing can be more iconic than that mix of cricketers. It was so good, it seemed surreal.


I remember when the auctions happened, my first thought was: ‘So you’re telling me Sourav Ganguly and Shoaib Akhtar are going to play for the same side?’. 

News 18

As in, Dada will captain Shoaib? They will high-5 each other when wickets fall?

Hindustan Times

What in the world!

And that was just one of the legendary combinations. Does anyone remember Shaun Pollock and Sachin Tendulkar playing together for Mumbai Indians? What a delight it was.

Batting With Bimal

Pollock – the South African icon. Sachin – well, God. Both inching towards the end of their careers, both knowing the game inside out. 

Unbelievable brilliance and 32 years of experience between the two of them.

The mix just kept getting better. For perspective, the CSK squad of 2008 included:

MS Dhoni
Ravichandran Ashwin
Lakshmipathy Balaji
Stephen Fleming
Matthew Hayden
Albie Morkel
Muttiah Muralitharan
Makhaya Ntini
Suresh Raina

Yahoo Cricket

I mean, would you look at that? Ravichandran Ashwin, Muttiah Muralitharan and Stephen Fleming in the same team? 

This seems like a video game where you get to choose whichever cricketer you like to build your team.


To no one’s surprise, the team went to the final and was pitched as expected winners. 

However, underdogs Rajasthan Royals came from behind and registered a surprising victory in the maiden IPL.


To give you an idea of how high the standards were, this team team of ‘underdogs’ included names like Shane Warne, Mohammad Kaif, Darren Lehmann, Graeme Smith and Shane Watson.

What to even say!

Amar Ujala

And who can forget, Dravid, Dale Steyn, Jacques Kallis, Mark Boucher and a very young Virat Kohli playing together for RCB?!

Sports Craazy
The Hindu

With age catching up with many of these legends, they turned towards coaching. Meanwhile some of them never played the IPL again for personal and political reasons. 


So all in all, while IPL will always continue to draw attention, its first season was stuff of dreams and can never ever be replicated. It was something else.