Indian Premier League update:
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) plans to organize the IPL event in UAE under safe environment by taking required precautions. After 6 months of delay, IPL is finally going to start from next month. The governing council has updated that the IPL event is scheduled from September 19 to November 10.
Due to COVID19, the tournament was postponed earlier this year and with the virus reaching India and a significant number of cases being diagnosed in India, it wasn’t possible to reschedule the tournament until now. Significant talks have now been going on between the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the organisers of the Indian Premier League (IPL) to deliver a safe event which can still deliver commercial value for its partners, plus have the best cricketers in the world involved.
When the tournament is confirmed for later this year it will consist of 8 teams from different cities and including the Mumbai Indians who are the record winners with 4 victories. Then there are the Rajasthan Royals, Chennai Super Kings, Kolkata Knight Riders, Delhi Capitals, Kings XI Punjab, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Home venue tournament
A home venue Indian Premier League (IPL) was the priority for the organisers of the tournament as this will give the economy in the country a huge boost after the outbreak of COVID19. Like many other countries, the crisis has severely affected the country and the way to begin to restart a positive outlook is to bring back the number one sport in the country.
Cricket has a huge place in the hearts of locals and they are proud to have a yearly tournament which captures the nation and with cities having their own team with many home grown players in addition to top foreign players, this event is loved and watched by millions.
Like in other Sports which have restarted around the globe, the IPL know its likely fans will not be able to be in attendance during any tournament hosted in the country this year.
Everything is being done to liaise with the BCCI to find a date that works within the world calendar of cricket, but safety and health concerns for all players and officials is vital. Without 100% guarantees through approved protocols, this tournament will struggle to get approved to be hosted in India and time is key here to deliver measures which can ensure the tournament is hosted in India as planned.
Potential start date
The organisers of the Indian Premier League have pencilled in a start date of September 26th to begin the tournament this year as there is the gap in the world cricket calendar which allows this event to run.
The format and exact schedule of matches is still to be confirmed as with a short window of opportunity to play matches, there may well be a reduction in the number of games played. However, the knock-out format will likely remain the same, so a winner can be crowned on merit.
The teams are desperate for a date to be officially confirmed so they can begin to finalise their squad and confirm the home grown players who will play along with the selected overseas players who will play. The financial implication is also huge for the players as they would have been guaranteed their salaries without this they are also left in limbo.
The other major tournament which plays a key role in the IPL being able to confirm a start date is the IPL World Cup, which is meant to start on October 18th is supposed to be held to November 15th in Australia. With outbreaks of COVID19 re-emerging in Australia, they may seek the option to postpone their tournament for a year, meaning that the road is clear for the IPL to get the green light to confirm the start date.
Therefore, all the top players will then be able to commit to playing in the IPL, given their schedules will now be clear and the IPL can then look to have the best players in its tournament and be the centre of attention in world cricket.