The T20 was originally scheduled to begin on March 29, pushed back in April, and later postponed indefinitely due to the on-going global health crisis. Following the postponement of International Cricket Council’s (ICC) T20 World Cup in Australia, IPL had a chance to proceed with plans on staging the tournament in September-October window.
Earlier this week, Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced the finals date of the tournament, with the T20 tournament to be held in the UAE from September 19 to November 10. The 53-day event, the longest ever IPL, will see matches played in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. The Board also confirmed that the Chinese mobile company VIVO retains as title sponsor.
The BCCI has decided to retain all the sponsors of the league, including its title sponsor VIVO, despite the call to boycott Chinese products in the wake of clashes between Indian and Chinese troops in eastern Ladakh in June. Vivo had signed a five-year deal with the BCCI as the major sponsor of the league worth Rs 2,199 crores in 2017.
Our Latest Cricket News: IPL to retain major sponsor as the league begins on September 19
At least four of BCCI’s major sponsors are related to China. Aside from IPL title sponsor VIVO, the mobile phone manufacturer, online fantasy game entity Dream11 — an associate sponsor of BCCI and IPL — has Chinese investment. Meawhile, e-learning platform Byju’s and Paytm — India’s team sponsor and the BCCI’s title sponsor for cricket in India respectively — are also funded by Chinese entities.
As the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) found its official venue and window, teams are already preparing for the action in September. For the first time, the cash-rich T20 tournament will be staging 60 matches in 53 days. United Arab Emirates emerged as the new hosts of the tournament after the six-month delay due to the threat of the coronavirus pandemic.
Sheikh Zayed Stadium
The 22-million-dollar Sheikh Zayed stadium, located in Abu Dhabi, hosted the opening ceremony and the portion of the first leg of the tournament. Located in Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Zayed stadium is arguably one of the world’s finest cricket grounds. With a capacity of 20,000 spectators, the stadium has a large stand at both ends, while the areas square of the wicket offering grass banks for additional seating.
Dubai International Cricket Stadium
The Dubai International Cricket stadium in Dubai, one of three biggest stadiums in the country, formerly known as the Dubai Sports City Cricket stadium is a multi-purpose stadium that is mainly used for cricket events. Designed by Canadian architect, Awsam Matloob, the Stadium has a capacity of 25,000 spectators, but is expandable to 30,000. It hosted several domestic and international cricket games.
Sharjah Cricket Stadium
Following India’s World Cup win in 1983, the Sharjah Cricket stadium became a popular venue for cricket tournaments. Located in the emirate of Sharjah, the stadium was built in the early 1980 with a capacity of 16,000 spectators. It hosted its first international matches in the 1984 edition of Asia Cup. Following the match-fixing scandals, the popularity of the stadium witnessed a downfall in the late 1990s.