Mumbai:The DLF Indian Premier League, the biggest cricket carnival of the year had created enough buzz before it commenced but many were skeptical if it would be a success.
Well, the verdict is out and the inaugural edition of the tournament may well turn out to be this year's biggest blockbuster, boasting of top cine stars like Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan and Preity Zinta.
In just four days, IPL's viewership has surpassed all the top rated TV soaps. Its viewership has also crossed the viewership during the Twenty20 World Cup last year, which was won by India.
Interestingly, a large chunk of IPL viewers comprises of women. Marketing experts say this dramatic increase in viewership has a lot to do with the entertainment quotient! Not surprisingly, the viewership has been higher for matches played by the Kolkata Knight Riders...with King Khan in the stadium and his bandwagon of co-stars. The team's matches have a viewership of 8.6 million across 6 metros.
"The good news for BCCI is that the inaugural match on Friday and two subsequent matches on Saturday saw 18 million people coming together to watch them. This figure is slightly higher than the initial T20 matches," said LV Krishnan, CEO, TAM Media Research.
Despite a flying start, the question that's troubling advertisers is - can IPL sustain its viewership for a long time? For most people, however, the IPL is where the money and viewership is at least for the moment.