For the first time, the IPL’s final two league matches will begin at the same time. The league phase was supposed to end on October 8 with a double header, according to the original schedule. Sunrisers Hyderabad were scheduled to play defending champions Mumbai Indians in the morning match, which began at 11 a.m. UAE time, while Royal Challengers Bangalore would play Delhi Capitals in the evening match, which began at 6 p.m. UAE time. On October 8, at 6 p.m. local time, both matches will now begin at the same time.

While the BCCI announced the decision in a press release on Tuesday, stating that both matches will be played “concurrently,” it did not elaborate on why it was made. IPL broadcaster, suggested running both matches in concurrently as STAR wanted to undertake a test run ahead of the 2022 season, when the IPL will be a multi-day event with multiple double headers.

The last time the IPL was a 10-team event was in 2011, when 70 league matches and four playoff games were played. The last time the IPL had more than eight teams was in 2013, when nine teams competed in a total of 76 matches.

On Tuesday, the IPL Governing Council also decided to announce the two new teams on October 25. The deadline for submitting bids has been pushed back until October 10th. So far, the tender document has been purchased by around 11 bidders. The BCCI has set a minimum bid price of INR 2000 crore for each of the new franchises (USD 270 million approx). Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Guwahati, and Cuttack are among the six cities competing, with the winning bidders owning the new teams in perpetuity.

On October 25, the BCCI will hold a tender for the IPL media rights for the following cycle (2023-27). The media rights to the IPL are the most valuable property in cricket. Star India paid a record 16,347.5 crore (US$ 2.55 billion) in 2017 to get the consolidated IPL rights for the 2018-22 seasons, including both television and digital rights worldwide.

The BCCI had solicited bids for seven categories at the time: television in India, digital in India, and rights in the United States, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and the rest of the world. The bids comprised both broadcast and digital rights for the five overseas markets.