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BW Businessworld

Virtually Stumped

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Cricket fan or not, it was hard to miss the 'Gayle storm' as Chris Gayle stormed to 175 runs from mere 30 balls this IPL season! The internet went into an instant 'Gayle' mode, riding high on the IPL hits. Even the 'Not Again Cricket!' segment of the audience turned to digital media to check the facts! Cashing in on the swiftly changing fortunes of digital media, ESPNcricinfo, the global digital destination for cricket, has launched various products for cricket fans that have debuted across online and mobile services in India and globally in time for the IPL 2013 season.

“Video is an area where we have been delivering a lot more in the way of content, and fans have taken to it quickly. Overall, video use on ESPNcricinfo each of the past 3 months has grown in the triple-digit percentages compared to the same period last year, and we have millions of video views every month along with year on year growth in our fantasy cricket games as well,” says Ramesh Kumar, Head of ESPNcricinfo & Digital Media, India when asked about the users response on these platforms.

A look at the comprehensive range of the IPL products available across digital devices this season!

The Social Scorecard
How about keeping a track of your performance along with your supporting team! Managing a virtual ‘social’ scorecard combines standard scorecard information and stats with the functionality of social media – allowing fans to access a rich trove of stats, news and player info, engage in debates and discussions, follow all other matches simultaneously, listening commentators detailed updates, fetch a live graph pictorially that depicts how the match is progressing and so on!

The Stands
An online forum designed entirely around cricket fans and their voice, ‘The Stands’ acts as an interface for its fans to file reports and commentary as well as to showcase photographs shot by fans and create interesting captions of pictures thereafter. A chance to speak to Rahul Dravid acts as an icing on the cake!

The Cordon
If you thought following your favourite columnist would be enough to gather all the hoo-la-hoo about IPL, think again! ‘The Cordon’ is a single home for the work of a group of sports journalists and bloggers in cricket such as Sambit Bal, Andy Zaltsman, Alison Mitchel, Andrew Hughes, Jarrod Kimber, Anantha Narayanan, Kamran Abbasi, Samir Chopra, Paul Ford and more. Fans around the world can read and follow the latest stories and collection of writers, listen to podcasts, comment, discuss and share with fans and friends.
 
Bose, Bhogle And Player Diaries
Since its inception, IPL have always been associated with Indian film industry in some or the other way. This season is no exception! Rahul Bose, Indian actor, screenwriter and director , will author a blog focused on the socio-cultural aspects of the IPL. Commentator Harsha Bhogle will also file a weekly video diary through the duration of the tournament along with player diaries featuring IPL players.

The Huddle

A visual treat for fans via Google+ Hangout will be hosted by Cricinfo’s editorial team that includes Sambit Bal, Sharda Ugra and more, will be an off-beat take on the matches, tactics, gaffes, controversies, off-field action  and results of IPL 2013. .
 
Fantasy Cricket
Apart from the ongoing Indian T20 fantasy league, a new game ‘Cricket Predictor’ on Facebook gives the users an account to sign in and play with friends, predicting the winner of each matchup during the game.
 
IPL Travel Guides
Delivering guides for fans travelling to each IPL destination was never so simple! The ESPNcricinfo Travel section is a central repository for all the information that IPL fans need to travel and experience the matches – and their host cities - in person. It serves as a special travel section dedicated to fans that includes tips for travellers, user submitted insights, local knowledge, photo galleries and more.