The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the IPL franchises are closely monitoring the present situation amid novel COVID-19 or coronavirus outbreak. While they are still hopeful about the IPL 2020, the BCCI is in constant with the foreign boards to make sure the availabilities of the foreign players if the tournament takes place in the near future.
The BCCI took time to announce the entire fixture of the IPL 2020 as the tournament was initially scheduled to run between 29th March and 24th May 2020. But due to the coronavirus outbreak, while the Indian government has suspended most of the visas till 15th April 2020 and also requested to host zero-spectators events before announcing the complete lockdown till 14th April 2020, the BCCI postponed the IPL 2020 till mid-April.
However, while the situation hasn’t been controlled yet, there is no confirmation about the IPL 2020. The BCCI is sorting out some plans to host the IPL 2020 anytime in this year, even a shorter tournament or closed-door tournament. The board and franchises are waiting for the next government decision along with monitoring the global condition before taking any next decision about the IPL 2020.
It is almost clear that everyone wants foreign players to be a part of the IPL 2020
While the BCCI is still desperate to organise the IPL 2020, the franchises are also demanding the availability of the foreign cricketers during the IPL 2020. So, the BCCI is in touch regularly with the other foreign boards to update the situation and the directives of the government in the fight against coronavirus.
A BCCI official recently told IANS, “While various options have been discussed like a closed-door tournament, or a curtailed one, it is almost clear that everyone wants foreign players to be a part of the IPL and that is one of the major highlights of the tournament. So, we have been constantly updating the boards of the situation here and the directives that are being issued by the health department as well as the government in the fight against coronavirus.
“In fact, it is a two-way process as international border lockdown is also an aspect that needs to be kept in mind because at the end of the day whenever the IPL does happen, the foreign players need to fly in.”
While the IPL 2020 is unlikely to begin in April, a BCCI official earlier claimed that the tournament would have to start in the first week of May 2020. But as the situation hasn’t been controlled yet, the IPL 2020 is also doubtful to begin in early May 2020.
Meanwhile, the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2020 is also doubtful amid coronavirus outbreak. Australia will host this tournament from 18th October to 15th November 2020. But if this tournament has been postponed, the BCCI can utilise this time for the IPL 2020.