The biggest star in the upcoming Indian Badminton League, world number one Lee Chong Wei on Saturday said that he is excited about exploring the different cities during the inaugural edition of the USD one million event commencing on August 14.
The two-time Olympic silver medallist said he was looking forward to playing with different nationalities and interacting with fans in different cities in India during the the competition.
"It will be exciting to play in different cities in India. I have been travelling a lot to New Delhi but this will be a new experience and I hope to have a great time teaming up with players from different countries," Lee said in a statement issued on Saturday.
The IBL auction will be held in the Capital on July 22 with London-based auctioneer Bob Hayton set to conduct the bidding among the six franchises.
"Any step being taken to promote and popularise badminton is highly commendable. Indian badminton has produced some legendary players for the sport and it's a great moment for all of us that India is taking a major step forward by conducting the Indian Badminton League," he said.
Applauding IBL for organising the first-ever auction for badminton players, Lee said, "It is a new concept and will thrill the fans no doubt. I hope the team owners will also make some good choices."
The IBL will feature six franchises and will run for 18 days. Each franchise will host a two-day leg.
The matches will be held during late afternoon and evening to coincide with prime time television and providing a convenient time for the stadium audience.
The top four franchises in the League will clash in the semifinals and the winners will meet in the final on August 31, to be held in Mumbai.