Karnataka bans online skill gaming, casts shadow on Fantasy Sports

New Delhi: The Karnataka Police (Amendment) Act, 2021, which was passed in the Karnataka Assembly to prohibit online skill games like fantasy sports, rummy and poker in the state, has cast a shadow on online fantasy sports.

Fantasy cricket is expected to be the most affected among all games of skill, as the ban falls right at the start of the biggest T20 cricket season in recent years.

The Indian Premier League (IPL) began on 19th September in Dubai and will continue till 15th October. The ICC T20 World Cup 2021 will begin two days later on October 17 and the final is set to take place on November 14. This schedule of back to back IPL as well as T20 World Cup is a bonanza for cricket fans as well as fantasy cricket players.

According to KPMG, the IPL fantasy league itself is worth $1 billion. With the T20 World Cup thrown in, this two month period (September 19 to November 14, 2021) is the peak of the fantasy cricket season of 2021. The ban will be a huge blow to Fantasy cricket lovers in Karnataka, as the state is among the two top fantasy sports markets in India along with Maharashtra.

India is the world’s largest market for Fantasy Sports by user base. The ban will affect the 50 plus fantasy players in the country including Dream 11, My11Circle, My Team 11, Paytm First Games, MPL and 11 Wickets.

Image courtesy of thesatimes

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