Crazy for Cricket

As He watched the English cricket team arrive in India last week for a two-month tour, Harish Thawani reflected on how the gentleman's game of clipped lawns and breaks for tea and cucumber sandwiches was changing. A few days before, Thawani stunned the sports world by paying $612 million—11 times the previous price and the biggest deal in cricket history—for the TV rights to Indian cricket for four years. "India is the new cricket superpower," says Thawani in the Bombay office of Nimbus Communications, a Singapore-based sports-production firm of which he is chairman. "India now provides between 60% and 80% of...

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