Moneycontrol
Dec 28, 2011 09:29 AM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Cricket fever to move over? IMG Reliance bets big on tennis

The Indian sports market has reached an inflection point, believes Ashu Jindal, COO of IMG Reliance. As the 17th Chennai Open is set to roll from January 2 2012, Jindal shares that though cricket will always rate highly, the Indian sports viewer is demanding more of sporting entertainment.

Cricket fever to move over? IMG Reliance bets big on tennis

Moneycontrol Bureau

The Indian sports market has reached an inflection point, believes Ashu Jindal, COO of IMG Reliance. As the 17th Chennai Open is set to roll from January 2 2012, Jindal shares that though cricket will always rate highly, the Indian sports viewer is demanding more of sporting entertainment.

"India is expected to grow at over 7% for the next decade. Growth in the media and entertainment industry is expected to grow at 14% until 2015, the entertainment and recreation arenas, including sport will be the greatest beneficiaries of this growth," he told moneycontrol.com. And this growth will not be just limited to cricket. Jindal believes.

According to a study by global consultancy giant PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the business of sports will generate an annual revenue nearing USD two billion in India by 2015, primarily boosted by the income from the TV media and sponsorships, And, marking this, Jindal expects a sea of change in the market. 

Betting on tennis as the one sport that has the potential to do business as cricket does in India, he also said, "Tennis has shed the image of being a high-brow sport and is now accessible, affordable and sustainable to the common man.".

Below is an excerpt of Ashu Jindal's exclusive interview to Moneycontrol.com.

Q: With the 17th Chennai Open coming up in Jan 2012, how do you see the evolution of what is probably India

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