The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) head Sourav Ganguly admits that the remaining games of the pandemic-postponed Indian Premier League (IPL) are not possible to be played in India, the BCCI have said. The IPL 2021 put on indefinite hold last week in the wake of India’s battle to the devastating second wave of the deadly virus that currently crippling the health sector.
“There are lots of organisational hazards like 14-day quarantine. It can’t happen in India,” Ganguly told a news agency in an exclusive interview. “This quarantine is tough to handle. Too early to say how we can find a slot to complete the IPL.” It is learnt that the entire 2020 tournament was played in the United Arab Emirates due to the outbreak of pandemic last year.
Earlier, reports claim that group of UK countries have reportedly offered to host the remaining 31 matches of the pandemic-postponed tournament, while Sri Lanka Cricket have also expressed its interest to stage the remaining games of the cash-rich T20 tournament. Prof. Arjuna de Silva, the chief of the managing committee of the SLC has confirmed that they can provide a window for the IPL.
However, BCCI treasurer Arun Singh Dhumal said that the said offers “has not been discussed yet” as it is “too early” to decide. “We will explore all the options and see when it’s feasible to play those matches and take a call at the right time,” Dhumal said by telephone. “Right now, our immediate plan is finalise the preparation for the Twenty20 World Cup in India later this year,” he added.
“IPL is huge, and everybody wants to host IPL matches. It has a massive fan following even outside India,” Dhumal added revealing that IPL’s popularity abroad and the revenue that the tournament can produce brought a lot of offers to host the competition. It is learnt that the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) got richer by 98.5 Cr. by hosting IPL 2020 in UAE.
Ganguly added that India would play three one-dayers and five Twenty20 Internationals in Sri Lanka in July. Virat Kohli’s side are due to leave for England in early June for the World Test Championship final in Southampton against New Zealand before playing a five-test series against England. Earlier, Rajiv Shukla, a senior BCCI vice-president and former chairman of IPL said the tournament will still happen “in due course, when the COVID situation improves”.
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