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Hockey India's coffer increasingly richer, with tw (10/1/2012)
--Uthra Ganesan Chaturvedi
Hockey India's coffer increasingly richer, with two more franchise ready to join

While the upcoming Hockey India League has already been making news for the people joining it backstage – including IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla, BJP leader Arun Jaitley and India TV supremo Rajat Sharma – the profile of the league is set to go up several notches with the addition of the final two teams in the league.

Sources confirm that India Cements – owned by BCCI president N Srinivasan, who also owns the Chennai Super Kings franchise, the most successful team in IPL – and Reliance Industries have finalised the terms of engagement and come on board as the fifth and sixth franchises in HIL. While Reliance Industries have apparently already signed up the contract and are on the verge of making an official announcement, India Cements is in the final stages of completing the formalities. undefined

Also, each of the six franchises will pay HIL Rs 7 crores for ownership of the team, enhancing the Hockey India financial kitty substantially by more than 40 crores.

Add to that the broadcast rights for the league from ESPN-Star Sports for initial three years and the approximately 8 crores the federation gets from Sahara India as sponsorship and hockey in India can finally step out of the shadows and get into the big league, even though it is quite a long way from rivalling cricket.

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