What does a beautiful actress, a billionaire heir and famous sports hero have in common. All played a major role in getting the KFC Big Bash League (BBL) BKT sponsorship underway for 2018.
BKT Tyres and Tradefaire International signed off on a three-year partnership as the official Off-Highway tyre supplier and at the launch event high profile Indian actress and undisputed beauty Mandira Bedi was MC for the event.
Close by was billionaire heir BKT’s Joint MD Rajiv Poddar, a devoted cricket fan, and thrilled as he watched the unveiling of his company’s BBL investment.
And rearing to take his place at the podium was former Australian cricket captain Ricky Ponting, widely regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of all time.
Ricky delighted the adoring throng of onlookers with international cricket stories and in particular his first tour overseas to India and Sri Lanka for seven games in August–September 1993 with the Australian Academy squad.
Ricky elaborated on how as an 18-year-old he was struck by the culture shock and had trouble with his game, even though he did score 99 not out in a one-day match at Colombo.
But as his career moved on, so did his admiration for the sub-continent, and their commitment to cricket.
For his first Australian team test, Ricky was only 20 years old and he arrived in Sri Lanka with all the anticipation you would expect from only the second Tasmanian batsman ever to wear the baggy green. David Boon being the first.
With the beautiful actress, billionaire and famous sports hero in attendance you could imagine Cricket Australia Head of Big Bash Leagues Kim McConnie being slightly overwhelmed. But that wasn’t the case.
Kim is one of the most proficient sports administrators in Australia, and it’s easy to see why the BBL is such a successful event on the calendar, under her watch. Kim never missed a beat explaining how important the BBL was to Australian cricket.
Mark Saunders from distributor Tradefaire explained the popularity of the BKT Tyres range and how it has been available in Australia for almost a decade. Providing large-scale tyres to farmers and in the mining sector.
As part of the launch, BKT and Tradefaire handed over additionaL cheques totaling $30,000 to provide support the struggling farming community. A $20,000 cheque was given to Aussie Helpers, a charity based in Gunnedah NSW which assists struggling farmers, and $10,000 to Ronald McDonald House in Tamworth NSW.
The KFC Big Bash League will headline the international summer of cricket that will see Australia host New Zealand, South Africa, India and Sri Lanka.
The 2018-19 international schedule will consist of 22 matches across all formats, including the first men’s international match to be played on the Gold Coast. Every side plays each other twice for a total of 59 matches between the tournament opener on 19 December 2018 and the final on 17 February 2019.
Contact Tradefaire International on tel: 1800 982 466, and see the full range of BKT tyres at: http://www.tradefaire.com.au/brands/bkt/
For the full KFC Big Bash League program go to: https://www.bigbash.com.au/
Here is the full transcript from the launch event held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)
The BKT, Indian multinational group, and Cricket Australia’s KFC BBL partnership agreement will run for a three-year period from 2018-2021.
Indian multinational Balkrishna Industries Ltd. (BKT) is the first sub-continent group to partner with the KFC Big Bash League (BBL), signing as the new Off-Highway tyre supplier.
BKT tyres are available in 160 countries, the company was only founded in 1987 but is a runaway success story. With a workforce of 7,000, their sales turnover is US$815 million a year.
BKT’s decision to partner with the BBL was motivated by the group’s passion and enthusiasm for cricket, and the BBL’s alignment to BKT’s “Growing Together” philosophy. In this specific case, growing together means to support and sustain cricket in Australia in order to see talent grow and attract attention for the competition on an international level – not least of all due to BKT’s presence in 160 countries globally.
Mr Rajiv Poddar, an ardent cricket fan, said: “I am really glad about this partnership since cricket has been my great passion ever. Being able to support it and cheer at a close makes us proud. Not only do we appreciate its dynamics, but also the team play and above all the spirit of the game ruling this sport, or else the unwritten fair play every player adheres to. On the contrary, unfair play means a damage for the game itself. Here in BKT, we have the same philosophy: to do our best paying full respect to everybody.”
Ms Kim McConnie said: “We are very excited to be welcoming BKT as a partner of the KFC Big Bash League as we draw closer to the highly anticipated BBL|08 season. BKT’s decision to come on board as a supplier of the BBL shows the growing appeal of the competition not just in Australia but overseas as well, and also demonstrates the value partners see in being associated with Australia’s most exciting sporting league.”
Steve Ryan, the General Manager of Tradefaire, said: “This agreement is invaluable and unprecedented. Australia’s passion for cricket is timeless. During summer all parks become crowded with children and teenagers playing cricket whilst enthusiastic parents keep up with the game from the sidelines.