Reliance Telecommunications-backed Viacom18 has bagged the media rights for the first cycle of Women’s IPL. The development was confirmed on Monday (16 January). Viacom18 has paid a whopping 951 crores to get the media rights for WIPL for the first five seasons. This means per match value of INR 7.09 crores. Notably, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is starting the Women's IPL this year. 

"Congratulations @viacom18 for winning the Women's @IPL media rights. Thank you for your faith in @BCCI and @BCCIWomen. Viacom has committed INR 951 crores which means per match value of INR 7.09 crores for next 5 years (2023-27). This is massive for Women's Cricket," Jay Shah tweeted on Monday.

"After pay equity, today's bidding for media rights for Women's IPL marks another historic mandate. It's a big and decisive step for empowerment of women's cricket in India, which will ensure participation of women from all ages. A new dawn indeed!"

Notably, BCCI will unveil the five WIPL franchises on January 25. With media rights for the tournament selling for a whopping 951 CR, the five franchises are expected to spark a massive bidding war. Coming to the start of the tournament,  BCCI has not officially released the tournament's schedule, but it is widely believed that the first season, which would consist of 22 matches, will take place between March 5 and March 23.

Uncapped cricketers have been given two alternatives, while players with caps--those who have represented India or are currently on a central contract--can select either Rs. 30 lakhs, Rs. 40 lakhs, or Rs. 50 lakhs as their base pricing (Rs. 10 lakhs and Rs. 20 lakhs).

Prior to the WIPL, the base price has been separated into five categories, ranging from Rs. 10 lakhs to Rs. 50 lakhs. The auction's registration cutoff date is January 26.

(With ANI Inputs)