The Board of Control for Cricket in India is all geared up to host the Indian Premier League Season 13 in September or October. If not in India then abroad. The word has come straight from the horse’s mouth –IPL Governing Council chairman Brajesh Patel.
The BCCI is waiting for the International Cricket Council to confirm the postponement of the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia to start preparations for the IPL 2020, Patel has told national daily Times of India
“We are ready to go ahead with the IPL. But we can start planning the schedule formally only after the official announcement is made on the T20 World Cup, which I’m expecting will arrive anytime soon. On our part, we’ve already earmarked the September-October window for the tournament to be played,” TOI has quoted Patel as saying.
The World Cup in Australia, all but poised to be deferred, is slated for October-November. But the BCCI has set the September-October timeline for the IPL so that Team India gets sufficient time for quarantine on their arrival Down Under for the series against Australia.
The ICC hasn’t been able to a make a formal communication to shift the World Cup to another date since the next schedule has not been finalised. The riddle of shifting the World Cup to another date is laced with many ifs and buts due to every alternate option having a rider or two.
March-April next year doesn’t appear a viable window as India will be hosting the IPL 2021 shortly after that. Deferring the World Cup in Australia to next year around the same time is not possible as India has been allotted the next edition of the tournament in that time slot. There can though be a compromising formula that Australia hosts the event next year and India a year later.
In such a scenario, the ICC and the stakeholders need time to arrive at any agreement and that is leading to the unwarranted delay on the final verdict on the T20 World Cup 2020.
While BCCI is waiting for the final word from the ICC, Patel revealed plans are already afoot to host the league during September-October. “Right now, we’re saying it’s tentative because finalities of the schedule can only be worked out once official confirmations arrive. Talks are going on with the league’s multiple stakeholders and we’re all on board,” he said and added “So, it’s a matter of time before we start putting things in place,” the IPL GC chairman said.
BCCI is determined to go ahead with the league that would add to the board’s coffers ₹ 4,000 to that extent that if the COVID-19 situation doesn’t relent, the league will be shifted abroad. “We have to watch how things are going to play out over the next one month from a Covid perspective. We don’t mind shifting the IPL to another country, either in part or in full. There are other aspects to be considered here,” the former India batsman and seasoned cricket administrator further told the daily.
The UAE and Sri Lanka are the available options to take the league overseas. Sri Lanka Cricket has also expressed interest to host the IPL. However in scenario where it will be inevitable to stage the league in India, UAE will reportedly be the first choice.
Earlier yesterday, BCCI president Sourav Ganguly had set the ball rolling for the league this year when in he in a letter to affiliated State units and associates had confirmed the board’s determination to go ahead with the IPL.
Also read: BCCI working on all options to host IPL