From Wills to Sahara India to Nike. From CK Nayudu to Kapil Dev to Virat Kohli. Cricket in India has turned into a powerhouse of emotions, fanfare and money.
Remember the live cricket matches on TV? The moments where the entire family from your parents, grandparents to your uncles, aunts and siblings would sit around the TV. Every match win would be followed by bursting fire-crackers and every loss with a strong debate. Well, the journey of cricket in the nation has been that dramatic with possibly more flair and certainly more glamour.
Replete with examples, stories and emotions, Indian Cricket has been quite closely associated with childhood memories for the 90s kid when Indian cricket was on an upward trajectory.
When TV channels apart from Doordarshan showed the channels and coloured TV made it big in every family in India. As such, the national sentiment around the sport has had tremendous changes and spurts in the last few decades – most of which relate to growth in the international diaspora as well as the genesis of the sport as a cultural integrator.
However, the sport mentioned without the forerunners in the industry – that would include team captains, selectors and sponsors – who channelled the sport and the industry in the right direction.
Indian Cricket Team‘s Jersey: The Heyday
Be it India vs Pakistan rivalry, or the Sharjah and Lords matches or even the Border-Gavaskar trophy – Indians have pretty emotionally invested in the sport. The interest, however, shifted to a more intense gear post some wins and incredibly so after the world cup wins. The time was also incredibly hopeful for national sports bodies – who were aware of all the attention that a sport garnered from advertisers and sponsors, as well as the masses, who made a sport famous.
The Subrato Roy-headed industrial conglomerate, Sahara India Pariwar was the first large player in the sports industry to have sponsored jerseys. The monetary aspect amounted to over Rs 3.34 crore per international match, where Sahara India paid the amount to have their logo displayed on the Team India jersey. The palpable deal by Subrata Roy, perhaps also catapulted Indian sports into the world of success and glamour.
Kit Sponsorship History
|2002-2003||Sahara India Pariwar|
|2003-2005||Sahara India Pariwar|
|2005-2013||Sahara India Pariwar|
Suddenly sports (read: cricket) could be taken as an acceptable time-bound activity for kids. After all, “we won the World Cup”, your father would say. Furthermore, this era also helped cricket make inroads into the towns and villages in the country. For some as a way out of a poor existence, and for others as a way to explore their innate talent.
This brought the glorious years of the sport in the country.
Amid rampant fanfare and doles of revenue for the players and the cricket board, Indian Cricket has made inroads into a league of unattainable financial numbers with multiple sponsors.
Circa 2008, the growth and the uprise in cricket prompted one enthusiastic BCCI official to propose a league that celebrates and brings international cricket to the largest cricket audience on the planet. This led to opening up the Indian Sports industry – to international players and boards no less. Doubt it?
Also Read: The 15 Richest Indian Cricketers
The Current Sponsor
— BCCI (@BCCI) March 7, 2017
OPPO Digital is the official sponsor of India’s National Cricket team. The Chinese mobile manufacturing giant became the official team sponsor in 2017 when it signed a bumper deal worth up to ₹ 1079 crores. Oppo’s bid was superior to that of another Chinese manufacturer VIVO (₹ 768 crores). The 5-year deal that runs until 2022, includes a sum of ₹ 4.61 crores per match for bilateral series along with ₹ 1.51 per match for the ICC sponsored events.
Indian Cricket Team Jersey – The Present
— BCCI (@BCCI) January 15, 2015
Although the jerseys kept on changing over the next few years, the prominent of them all was the dark blue one with a splash of tricolour. Apart from that in 2007, when it had a sky blue colour, the Indian national team has stuck with the dark blue along with some or the other hint of the tricolour.
After acquiring the manufacturing rights for the team in 2005, Nike has been regularly designing and providing the new jerseys for the Men in Blue. The current jersey by Nike has a bolder ultramarine blue shade with the tricolour accent placed near the chest.
Recently, Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli, former captain MS Dhoni and Indian women’s T20I team captain Harmanpreet Kaur unveiled India’s new jersey in Rajiv Gandhi Cricket Stadium, Hyderabad, ahead of World Cup 2019.
The team launched the new jersey along with Nike as their official apparel partner. The men’s team will be seen donning the new jersey for the first time in the upcoming ODI series against Australia and then in the forthcoming ICC World Cup 2019.
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