IPL format 2011

Posted by
< 1 minute read

IPL 4 - This time it's slightly more confusing

This is so perfect we actually had a little bit of a cry to express our gratitude. We struggle to explain our feelings about this unbelievable format, but if pushed, we’d go for ‘super psyched’.

Brace yourself.

Group stages

There are 10 IPL teams. They are split into two groups of five.

  • Every team plays the other four in its group twice
  • Every team plays four of those from the other group once
  • Every team plays the remaining team from the other group twice

Why do they play teams from the other group? It means more matches.

Why do they play one team from the other group twice? Don’t know. Same reason probably.

How do they decide which will be the cross-group home and away fixtures? They pick team names out of an Indian Cements Ltd sponsored hat.


The teams ranked first and second after the mixed bag of results from the group phase play each other. The winner goes through to the final.

The teams ranked third and fourth play each other and the winner goes through to a match against the loser of the first play-off match.

The winner of that third match goes through to the final.


It is rumoured that the winner of this match may win the IPL, but this could not be confirmed at the moment we decided we would click ‘publish’ on this post.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


Why risk it when it's so easy to sign up?


  1. This is similar to the format used by NFL. Except the play offs are a bit different.

    Ofcourse this is not as bad as playing each of the other *19* teams home and away.

  2. for the longest time while reading this, i thought you were kidding. then i looked up the schedule. Saw the Q1, E, Q2 business. I’m in shock. Will take your word about ‘picking team names out of an Indian Cements Ltd sponsored hat.’

  3. I know I’m at risk of being flamed here, but the play-offs bit (once I got my head around it) makes sense to me and I think should be used in other round-robin tournaments.

    The group stage is (DLF Maximum) pants.

    1. We wouldn’t disagree. There is actually an incentive to finish top.

      But top of what?

  4. The four teams qualifying for the next round are not the top two in each group. Hence looking it as Group A & B does not make much sense. A schedule has been created where 10 teams play 14 matches each instead of 8*14 format used in earlier edition. An extra game in knock out stages has also been added.

  5. Caught a glimpsette of the IPL action today and noticed
    1 v bossy woman reducing Hick to incoherent flailings and mumblings
    2 Solanki looking v v v v nice though hair seems surprisingly thicker
    3 Shane Warne’s face fearsomely stretched and smoothed
    4 Lasith Malinga is magic
    5 Can’t actually remember any names of the teams that were playing.

  6. Who needs American-style cheerleaders when you can have an American-style format? Clever chaps, these IPL fellows. Now all they need is a County-Championship-style points system.

  7. The best thing about this is that none of it is original… the play some teams twice some teams once is straight out of American Sports conferences, and the play-off system was used in the New Zealand Domestic T20… I want to say I’m glad that overall this leads to less matches than if they’d stuck to the old format but as with everything I’ve watched so far of this… meh.

    Also there’s a staggering number of previously Mumbai fans now divided between Mumbai and Pune… consider me added to that list…

    1. Why does a tournament format NEED to be original?

      I wish IPL would actually be a little innovative in the actual game. Bowlers should be allowed to bowl up to 6 overs and the innings should come to an end at the fall of the 6th wicket. This way you actually pick your 7 best batsmen and 4 best bowlers. Best of all, we won’t have to sit though Virat Kohli bowling Slow Mediums.

  8. One more vote for the playoffs. After a team has made it to the semi-finals, it usually just sits back and sips pina colada. Now they have an incentive to finish #1 or #2.

    The group stage requires a PhD to figure out though.

  9. Genius, although the playoff format is way too simple. Increase the number of playoff teams to seven. Odd numbers are best, because they complicate both the playoffs and the selection of teams from two groups. Make it so that the top three teams from each group go through “as of right”, with one of the two fourth placed teams also going through dependent on which scores highest at some arbitrary measure that is, and this is the crucial bit, the exact opposite of what one would do to win a cricket match. Most runs scored by the tenth wicket partnership, for example.

    Seven teams. Then it’s straightforward. 1 plays 6 with the winner going into the mini-semi-final against the loser of 2 Vs 5, 7 to have previously played either or both of these to determine who gets home advantage in the minor playoff match, with the winner playing the loser or both of 4 Vs 3 (not 3 Vs 4). The winners of either of these matches will go forward to play the other losers from the inverse-quarter-final match which was played bewteen the third-placed teams in either of the second group phase playoff rounds. Now you see the advantage of finishing either 1st or 6th, as these teams can afford to lose twelve times in the playoffs and still have a second chance at a junior final playoff eliminator. The winner of this match and the loser of the public vote will contest the final, for the chance to be crowned IPL Champions 2027.

    This is exactly how Superleague XXVIIXCLDXXV works.

  10. Oh, get over it, KC et al. I could care less about the IPL, but people seem to be enjoying it. That’s what sports is supposed to be about, last I checked. Nobody’s forcing you to watch.

    1. The point is that sport is most enjoyable when it builds to something; when there’s a narrative.

      When the format of a competition is convoluted and designed for financial reasons rather than entertainment reasons, it’s harder to follow and there’s no sense of a story unfolding.

      That’s why we’re not going to ‘get over it’.

    2. Oh do get over it, BH. I could care less about King Cricket, but people seem to be enjoying it. That’s what cricket blogs that whinge about the IPL are all about, last I checked. Nobody is forcing you to visit.

    3. Oh do get over it, Bert. I could care less about King Cricket’s comments section, but people seem to be enjoying it. That’s what the comments section of cricket blogs that whinge about the IPL are all about, last I checked. Nobody is forcing you to read them.

    4. Oh do get over it…

      [repeat until all possible critical comments have been found to be strictly illogical]

  11. Yes, that may be what makes sport more enjoyable for you, but there are millions of people who are enjoying this tournament just fine. Other sports have similar formats, and people enjoy those too. There’s enough test cricket to go around, but you seem unwilling or unable to see that people like the IPL as well. If people weren’t entertained, they wouldn’t watch, and the “financial reasons” would evaporate. Your constant IPL-bashing is like watching only indie movies (which is fine) but then whining every time a romantic comedy is released.

    1. We travelled thousands of miles to go and see the IPL last year. Believe us, we are neither unwilling nor unable to see that people like it.

      We do think it could be better – just as we think Test cricket could be better. Millions of people are enjoying the IPL, yes, but it’s in spite of a shit format that no sport should have.

      In the UK, the format of the county Twenty20 competition was changed for the worse. People were no longer entertained and they didn’t watch.

  12. E=Entertainment
    M=Mass (directly related to cricket attendance)
    C=Commentary cliches (Shastri and co.)

    Now if I could only find a formula that connects these three quantities.

  13. format requires some thinking..vulgar amount of money is involved for sure and sponsors puking all over the places but still its the same league which provided us with some good entertainment and almost a different league of thinking cricketers..take it or leave it but the news is that this thing IPL is working..nonetheless a good artice:)

Comments are closed.