IPL 2020 in UAE | Sportzwiki

IPL 2020 in UAE

Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)
Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Chennai Super Kings Batting More Aggressively In IPL 2021 Than IPL 2020: Eric Simons

Chennai Super Kings batsmen had planned to bat more aggressively on the slowish UAE tracks compared to last time, and that’s what they have been doing during the first two games, said CSK bowling consultant Eric Simons.

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) produced a clinical all-round show to humble Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) by six wickets and claim the top spot in the Indian Premier League (IPL) pecking order in Sharjah on Friday.

Chennai Super Kings
Chennai Super Kings. Image Credits: Twitter

Chennai Super Kings Bowling Consultant Eric Simons Said Difference From Last IPL 2020 Was CSK Batted More Aggressively

The former India bowling coach said that the last IPL 2020 was a good learning experience for the Chennai Super Kings yellow brigade failed to qualify for the playoffs for the first time in their IPL history.

“So, what went wrong here in the last IPL was a tremendous lesson for us. But I think, probably the biggest different is the aggression in our batting, we have come out lot more aggressive than we did last time,” Simons said at the post-match press conference after his side outplayed Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Eric Simmons
Eric Simons

Eric Simons also had words of praise for all-rounder Dwayne Bravo, who returned with figures of 3/24, saying the team was delighted with his performance and the West Indian has bowled exceptionally well in the last few matches. All-rounder Shardul Thakur also scalped two crucial wickets, and Eric Simons said that the Palghar boy was very smart in using his tactics and ability to read the wicket and the batsman in the crunch situation.

Eric Simons: MS Dhoni-led CSK Learned Its Lesson From A Miserable IPL 2020 At UAE

Eric Simons also said that the MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings outfit had learned its lesson after a horrendous show in the 2020 edition, which was also held in the UAE.

“We have already spoken about what worked for us in India during the first half of the IPL (2021). We spoke about what we did wrong here (in the United Arab Emirates last time). You know any situation, often the bad performance is the best place to learn,” Simons said.

Shardul Thakur. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Shardul Thakur. (Photo Source: Twitter)

If Dwayne Bravo put up a fantastic bowling performance, it was Shardul Thakur, who kept things tidy, scalping two wickets to dampen RCB’s batting after a fine start. CSK coach Eric Simons said the self-belief helped Shardul Thakur fight back after going for 18 runs in the first two overs.

In the 15th over, Shardul Thakur conceded just four runs and returned for his final over in the 17th over of RCB’s innings, with AB de Villiers still on the crease. He was hammered for a six, but Shardul Thakur returned and sent him back in the same over. Then came the prized wicket of top scorer Devdutt Padikkal, who was set with 70 runs. However, his slower short ball was poorly executed, and the pacer got his second wicket with RCB struggling.

Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya
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Hardik Pandya Is Getting Closer To Playing After Missing First 2 IPL Games In UAE :Shane Bond

Hardik Pandya is “close to playing” but Mumbai Indians won’t rush him back as the franchise is also keeping in mind the needs of the Indian team while managing his workload, MI bowling coach Shane Bond said.

Hardik Pandya, who has hardly bowled ever since returning to action after back surgery last year, missed his second successive IPL game in the UAE leg but coach Shane Bond asserted that the Baroda all-rounder was training well and hopefully will make a mark in the business end of the tournament.

Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya[photo: Twitter]

Hardik Pandya Is Getting Closer To Playing As MI Balancing Needs Of Team With The Needs Of Indian Team As Well: Shane Bond

Mumbai Indians suffered a seven-wicket loss to Kolkata Knight Riders on Thursday in their second IPL 2021 game at UAE. It was after their 20-run loss to Chennai Super Kings in the first game after the resumption.

“Look, Hardik is training well, like Rohit. He is getting closer to playing. We are obviously balancing the needs of our team with the needs of Team India as well,” Bond said at the post-match press conference when asked about Hardik’s status.

“The one thing that this franchise does very well is look after its players with an eye on not only to try and win this competition but also on the T20 World Cup that’s following on,” said the former New Zealand speedster.

“We are hopeful that Hardik will be back for the next match. As I said, he has trained today and trained pretty well by all counts.”

Mumbai Indians coach Mahela Jayawardene (Photo| Mumbai Indians website)
Mumbai Indians coach Mahela Jayawardene (Photo| Mumbai Indians website)

Mumbai head coach Mahela Jayawardene had earlier said that Hardik Pandya was kept out of the IPL game against Chennai Super Kings as a precautionary measure as he had a little niggle. Shane Bond backed the team management’s decision to not play the all-rounder Hardik Pandya in the first two matches. Hardik Pandya is in India’s T20I 2021 World Cup squad and may be seen bowling apart from aggressive batting.

“We are obviously desperate to put him back out on the field. But like anything you have to balance everything up, you have to also consider what the player wants,” he said.

“There’s also no point rushing him back to get injured to miss the rest of the tournament when we may have a chance to win it. I think we are doing the right thing and hopeful (that) we will get him back shortly and he’ll have an impact on the back-end of the tournament and get us into the playoffs and hopefully win the tournament from there.”

Hardik Pandya scored just 19 runs in the two innings he played in the ODI series against Sri Lanka. He picked up only two wickets in the three matches. Even in the solitary T20I, he played on the tour, Hardik Pandya scored 10 runs at a strike rate of 83.33 and conceded 17 runs in the two overs he bowled.

After missing out on a lot of action owing to a back injury, Hardik Pandya made a phenomenal comeback in the IPL 2020 season, playing the finisher role for the team Mumbai Indians and hammering the ball in the slog overs at a strike rate of 178. But in IPL 2021, he disappointed scoring only 52 runs in 7 games averaging a pathetic 8.66. He didn’t bowl in the last two IPL editions.

Shane Bond: Mumbai Indians Was Short Of Their Target Predicted Score As He Credited KKR Bowlers For Restricting Them To Below 160

On Thursday, Mumbai Indians were restricted to sub-par 155 against eventual winners KKR and Shane Bond said that the defending champions were well short of the score.

“I think it was a 175-180 kind of wicket and we were well short of the score. And KKR bowled beautifully, bowled disciplined and then came out and really put us under pressure with the bat and dominated the game and they really deserved to win,” said the 46-year-old.

Shane Bond (BCCI.TV)
Shane Bond (BCCI.TV)

Shane Bond conceded that his team was completely outplayed by the Eoin Morgan-led KKR.

“Today, they played well. You have to give them credit. They were positive, put us under pressure. We bowled some balls that by our standards weren’t good enough,” he said.

“You can say that they put pressure on us and we weren’t good enough to respond. Look, we have won four of the last six tournaments on the back of some brilliant bowling performances. We will improve, I am sure, over the next coming outings. I am not concerned about that. We were just outplayed today but expect a lot better from us in our next game.”

Rahul Tripathi and Venkatesh Iyer smashed quick half-centuries as Kolkata Knight Riders defeated Mumbai Indians by seven wickets in their Indian Premier League (IPL) match at Abu Dhabi. Rahul Tripathi scored an unbeaten 74 off 42 balls and Venkatesh Iyer, playing his second IPL game, smashed 53 off 30 balls, as Kolkata raced to 159 for 3 in 15.1 overs, chasing down Mumbai Indians’ 155 for 6 quite comfortably.

Ravi Shastri Image Source : AP
Ravi Shastri Image Source : AP
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Ravi Shastri Told Virat Kohli And Selectors Not To Unleash Pacer Jasprit Bumrah In Tests In Indian Soil

Ravi Shastri was ready to put his money on pacer Jasprit Bumrah being an all-format bowler so much that he even told captain Virat Kohli and the selectors not to reveal him before the South Africa tour in 2018.

When Jasprit Bumrah with an unorthodox bowling action burst onto the scene in the cash-rich IPL playing for Mumbai Indians in 2013, very few believed he could make it big at the international level. Those who predicted he would gain stardom were only vouching for Jasprit Bumrah’s white-ball skills.

Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli PTI Photo by Shashank Parade (PTI11_21_2014_000176B)
Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli PTI Photo by Shashank Parade (PTI11_21_2014_000176B)

Ravi Shastri Told Virat Kohli And Selectors Not To Unleash Jasprit Bumrah In Tests Before 2018 Cape Town Test Against South Africa

There was hardly anyone willing to put their weight behind Jasprit Bumrah as the Test cricketer apart from India head coach Ravi Shastri who vouched to include Jasprit Bumrah in Tests. After making his limited-overs ODI and T20I debuts in Australia in 2016, pacer Jasprit Bumrah quickly built a reputation of being a bankable seam bowler. It was Ravi Shastri who insisted not to ‘unleash’ Jasprit Bumrah on Indian pitches in Test cricket.

“No one believed Jasprit Bumrah could play Test cricket. He was a white-ball bowler. But when I took over as coach I asked myself: ‘How do I take 20 wickets overseas?’ said Ravi Shastri.

Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)
Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)

“I knew I needed four great fast bowlers because I had played so much Test cricket against the West Indies. It started in South Africa in 2018 and we lost that fantastic series 2-1. I wanted to unleash Bumrah in that first Test in Cape Town. I bounced the idea off Virat months before and told the selectors: ‘Do not unleash him in India. I don’t want the world to see him in Test cricket before Cape Town.’ That was three years ago. Since then he’s taken 101 wickets [in 24 Tests]. It’s remarkable,” Ravi Shastri said.

Jasprit Bumrah was an instant success in his first Test appearance in Cape Town. His delivery to Proteas batsman AB de Villiers that found the gap between his bat and pad had a stamp of class and authority. Since then, the right-arm seamer has never looked back.
In his three years at the Test level, Jasprit Bumrah has proved coach Ravi Shastri right and all his doubters wrong.
During the recent Test series in England, he was India’s most impressive seamer and even went on to become the fastest Indian pace bowler to reach 100 Test wickets.
Before his achievement, Kapil Dev held the record, getting to the feat in 25 Tests, but the World Cup-winning captain’s record was bettered by Jasprit Bumrah, who picked up his 100th Test scalp in his 24th game. He has picked 6 five-wicket hauls and his career-best figure is 6/27 and his career average is 22.79 which is quite impressive.

Jasprit Bumrah Will Ply His Trade For The Mumbai Indians In IPL 2021 UAE Leg

Jasprit Bumrah, who will ply his trade for the Mumbai Indians in IPL 2021 resuming on Sunday at the UAE, had major roles to play in India’s historic back-to-back Test series wins in Australia in 2018-19 and then in 2020-21.

Ravi Shastri said that India had the upper hand in the series when he was asked about the outcome of the England series which is still undecided as the fifth Test was cancelled due to Covid-19 concerns in the Indian camp.
Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah (Image Credit: Twitter)

“I think so because you are playing overseas and you’re ahead with one game to go. Look at the first Test [India were 52 for one and chasing 209 when the rain ruined the final day]. We would have knocked off those runs, definitely. It could have easily been 3-1. Then no one would have cared for the last Test,” Ravi Shastri added.

Jasprit Bumrah is one of the best bowlers in recent times in the world at the moment and he showed his class in the recently concluded red-ball Test series against England. He finished as the highest wicket-taker for India in the four Tests and picked up 18 wickets. In his prime form, Jasprit Bumrah has been one of the match-winners for the Mumbai Indians and has bowled splendidly in the India leg of IPL 2021 as well.

The right-arm quick was superb in the previous edition of IPL 2020 held entirely in UAE too by being the 2nd highest wicket-taker and he enjoyed the conditions really well. He used the pace of the wickets to his advantage and executed the yorkers to perfection. In the first leg of IPL 2021, the right-arm pacer with an unorthodox action scalped 6 wickets in 7 matches at an average of 32 and an economy of 7.11. In the previous season in IPL 2020, he picked 27 scalps in 15 games averaging an awesome 14.96.

Representational image of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup trophy | AFP / Jewel Samad
Representational image of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup trophy | AFP / Jewel Samad
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T20I World Cup Set To Be Shifted To The UAE And Oman As BCCI Internally Intimidated ICC: Reports

T20I World Cup in October-November of 2021 is set to be shifted to the UAE and Oman with the BCCI having internally intimated the ICC to go ahead with its preparation due to a tricky Covid-19 situation in India.

While the UAE was always the first backup option, Oman’s capital Muscat has been added as the fourth venue, apart from Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Sharjah, for the marquee tournament that will start in the last week of October.

T20I World Cup trophy. (Photo Source: Twitter)
T20I World Cup trophy. (Photo Source: Twitter)

T20I World Cup Set To Move Out Of India: ICC Informed Internally

ICC had earlier reportedly put UAE as the venue for this year’s T20I World Cup on standby, seeing India witnessed an unprecedented Covid-19 surge. The T20I World Cup was supposed to happen last year in Australia but was postponed to 2021 due to the coronavirus outbreak worldwide. The second wave of the virus, however, is causing utter chaos in India, with the country reporting over 3,50,000 cases on a daily basis.

“Yes, the BCCI, during the ICC board meeting, has formally asked for a four-week window to take a final call but, internally, they have said that they would like to keep the hosting rights and wouldn’t mind the tournament being held in UAE and Oman,” a senior board official, privy to ICC board developments, told PTI on the condition of anonymity.

He said that Muscat has been zeroed in specifically for the preliminary rounds of the 16-team competition, which will also allow the three UAE grounds to get sufficient time to freshen up after 31 IPL games.

“If IPL finishes by October 10, then the UAE leg of World T20 can start off in November which would give three weeks’ time to the pitches to be spruced up for the global event. In the meanwhile, the first week can be held in Oman,” he said.T20I World Cup Set To Be Shifted To The UAE And Oman As BCCI Internally Intimidated ICC: Reports 1

Sourav Ganguly (BCCI president), Manu Sawhney (ICC chief executive) and Jay Shah (BCCI secretary) pose with the T20 World Cup International Cricket Council
Sourav Ganguly (BCCI president), Manu Sawhney (ICC chief executive), and Jay Shah (BCCI secretary) pose with the T20I World Cup International Cricket Council

A majority of the ICC board members believe that India is trying to bide time as they take stock of the situation at a time when it is very difficult to predict how things pan out in October-November.

“If you think about it practically, India is now reporting around 120,000 plus cases which are close to one-third of what was being reported at the end of April and start of this month. But sitting on June 28, if you say “yes” to holding the World T20 in India, how can you predict the health situation in October if there is a third wave,” the seasoned official asked.

The second question is if the BCCI is wary of resuming the eight-team IPL in September in India, how can it hold a 16-team event in the country within a month’s time.

“Look, everyone including BCCI brass knows that monsoon is not a good enough reason and it is Covid-19, with almost 2500 crore revenue riding on the tournament.”

“In a 16-team event, if there is one team that gets affected in bubble with multiple cases, it won’t be like IPL. For weaker national teams, you won’t get ready replacements outside 14 or 15 men. There are teething issues,” an official of an associate nation, which is a part of the tournament, said.

India was confirmed as the host for ICC T20I World Cup 2021. On the other hand, Australia will host the marquee event in 2022. The T20I World Cup which was scheduled to be held in Australia from October 18, 2020, was postponed in July due to the COVID-19 pandemic, making way for the cash-rich IPL 2020 in the United Arab Emirates. The T20 World Cup in 2021 will be the seventh edition of the tournament and the first since 2016.

Overseas Players Would Be Happy To Play Remainder IPL 2021 And T20 World Cup In The UAE

Another question doing the rounds is how many overseas players would like to risk coming to India for the tournament if the situation doesn’t improve drastically.

“They would certainly come and play the IPL in the UAE and would be more than happy to play the T20 World Cup over there. But one can be rest assured that there would apprehensions with regards to health safety with players’ families and their boards and the local cricket association would give them an update on health threat perceptions. It would be easier said than done,” the official said.

The Oman Cricket Academy (OCA) ground in Al Amerat. - OMAN CRICKET
The Oman Cricket Academy (OCA) ground in Al Amerat. – OMAN CRICKET

While both ICC and BCCI mull over Muscat as their second venue for the T20I World Cup, Oman Cricket Association has expressed interest in hosting the event “if given an opportunity”. ICC has given BCCI time till June 28 on whether the event can be held in India or will have to be shifted to UAE.

There is a chance Oman may stage the T20I World Cup qualifiers if the tournament is moved to UAE. However, even if the tournament is shifted out of the country, India will retain the hosting rights.

Kolkata Knight Riders, IPL 2021
Pat Cummins[photo: Twitter]
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Pat Cummins’ Absence For The Rest Of IPL 2021 May Not Hit KKR Too Hard, Says Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra has said that the likely absence of Pat Cummins for the rest of IPL 2021 might not hit the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) too hard.

Pat Cummins has reportedly decided against returning for the remainder of IPL 2021. While no reason has been specified, it could be because of the hectic international schedule after the tournament.

Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Aakash Chopra: Pat Cummins’ Absence Not A Loss If Lockie Ferguson Is Available

In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra opined that Pat Cummins’ absence might not be too big a loss for KKR if Lockie Ferguson is available, as the latter is arguably a better T20 bowler.

“KKR already have Lockie Ferguson. And in my opinion, if you have to pick one of them just as a T20 bowler, I will pick Lockie Ferguson ahead of him (Cummins). If Lockie is available and plays, it is absolutely fine. I don’t think they are going to miss Pat Cummins the bowler,” said Chopra.

Lockie Ferguson
Lockie Ferguson (Image Credit: Twitter)

The cricketer-turned-commentator reasoned that Pat Cummins’ bowling numbers have been average over the last two seasons of the IPL.

“His (Cummins’) performance has not been great as a bowler. If we talk about last year, he took just 12 wickets in 14 matches, and that was in the UAE, where the remaining matches will be played. The economy was okay, less than eight. This year also, he took only nine wickets in seven matches, and he was more expensive as well, almost nine runs per over,” observed Chopra.

Pat Cummins picked 12 wickets in 14 games that included a 4-wicket haul in the 2020 IPL season. He bowled well in IPL 2021 picking 9 scalps in 7 games averaging 26.33 besides scoring 93 runs averaging 31. However, Aakash Chopra did acknowledge that Pat Cummins has made his presence felt as a batsman, an area where Lockie Ferguson might not be able to contribute much.

Lockie Ferguson who is yet to play a game in IPL 2021, picked 6 scalps in 5 matches averaging 24.66 in IPL 2020 which was held in UAE. Lockie Ferguson was drafted into the KKR setup in 2019 and played just five games. In 2020 too he played 5 games and took 6 wickets that included a 3-wicket haul.

“As a batsman, his performance has been decent. It was not that good in the UAE; he did hit a fifty but had an average of twenty. This time he has hit a fifty, but the average is 31, and he has a strike rate of 166,” added Aakash Chopra.

Pat Cummins’ decision to opt out of the remainder of IPL 2021, despite the huge bucks he would lose out on, might trigger a series of withdrawals from the tournament. That could especially be the case with the Australian and English all-format players, as the T20 World Cup and the Ashes are close on the heels of the prestigious league.

Aakash Chopra: Mark Wood Likely To Replace Pat Cummins In The KKR Line-up

“It could be Mark Wood. He is up there in my mind. He bowls very well; last time he had made himself unavailable, but if this time he makes himself available, then Mark Wood will be my option for the Kolkata Knight Riders.”

Mark Wood
Mark Wood

Mark Wood had originally withdrawn from IPL 2021 to manage his workload. Mark Wood had earlier registered himself for the highest base price of INR 2 crore and was among the 292 players who were finally shortlisted by the 8 franchises for the mini-auction in Chennai. Mark Wood has played only one match in the T20 league so far and it came for Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in 2018.

With the T20 World Cup and the Ashes scheduled to be played just after the IPL, it is highly unlikely the injury-prone pacer will make himself available this time around as well.

Pat Cummins. (BCCL/IPL)
Pat Cummins. (BCCL/IPL)
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Pat Cummins Will Be Unavailable For The Remainder Of IPL 2021 At UAE

Pat Cummins who has established himself as one of the best bowlers in the world in the last few years, will not be available for the remainder of IPL 2021 to be staged in UAE without giving any reason behind the move.

Pat Cummins was the most expensive buy in the 2020 IPL Auction after being bagged by KKR for a whopping 15.50 crores.

Pat Cummins
Pat Cummins[photo: Twitter]

Pat Cummins Picked 9 Scalps In 7 Games Besides Scoring 91 Runs In IPL 2021

It was back to purple and gold for pacer Pat Cummins who picked 12 wickets in 14 games that included a 4-wicket haul in the 2020 IPL season. He bowled well in IPL 2021 picking 9 scalps in 7 games averaging 26.33 besides scoring 93 runs averaging 31. Pat Cummins’ KKR teammates Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy, Sandeep Warrier, and Tim Seifert had tested positive for Covid-19 leading to the indefinite postponement of IPL 2020.

Varun Chakravarthy (File Photo)
Varun Chakravarthy (File Photo)

The resumption of the Indian Premier League (IPL)was given yet another blow after reports emerged that Australian pacer Pat Cummins would not be heading to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to take part in the remaining matches for the Kolkata Knight Riders(KKR).

Pat Cummins And David Warmer Could Be Rested From West Indies Tour Due To Family Reasons

According to a report in Sydney Morning Herald, Pat Cummins had already made it clear that he would not be taking part in the remaining matches of the IPL. However, no reason was given behind his decision.

“David Warner and Pat Cummins could be rested from the West Indies tour because of family reasons – others could follow after a draining year in several bubbles – and Cummins, despite a multimillion-dollar IPL contract, has already said he will not return to the T20 tournament this season,” stated the report.

SRH handed over the captaincy reins to Kane Williamson after suffering defeats in five of their six matches under David Warner’s leadership. However, the move did not yield immediate dividends as the Orange Army was handed a 55-run drubbing by the Rajasthan Royals. With Jonny Bairstow and Kane Williamson in good form, SRH did not have any other option but to leave David Warner out of their playing XI.

David Warner
David Warner (Image Credit: Twitter)

The suspended 14th edition of the IPL is likely to be played in UAE in the September 15 to October 15 window with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) looking at a 25-day window for the cash-rich league. The BCCI on Saturday announced it will complete the remaining matches of the IPL 2021 season in the UAE.

The decision has come after Ashley Giles, managing director of the England men’s team, had said that the ECB is not planning to change their schedule for the IPL. The remaining matches of the IPL would most likely be played between September 15 and October 15 window. Australia will tour West Indies for 5 T20Is and 3 ODIs in July, followed by a five-match T20I series against Bangladesh away in August.

While Australia does not have any bilateral commitments in the September-October window, Cricket Australia faces a tough call to decide whether it should leave players ahead of the ICC T20 World Cup. After England made its players unavailable for IPL 2021 Phase 2 and New Zealand playing bilateral series, Australian players could also be unavailable with KKR’s Pat Cummins all but certain to not return for the UAE leg.

Wriddhiman Saha. (AFP)
Wriddhiman Saha. (AFP)
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Wriddhiman Saha Claims He May Have Contracted Covid-19 After His Interaction With CSK Players

Wriddhiman Saha claims that he might have got the virus after mingling with the “CSK guys” post their Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 game in Delhi last month.

Sunrisers Hyderabad wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha pointed out on Saturday that he might have contracted the coronavirus after his interactions with the Chennai Super Kings players and support staff post their game at the Arun Jaitley Stadium.

Wriddhiman Saha (Picture Credit: BCCI/IPL)
Wriddhiman Saha (Picture Credit: BCCI/IPL)

Wriddhiman Saha Claims He May Have Contracted The Virus While Interacting With A Few CSK Players

SRH and CSK played Match 23 in the capital city on April 28 which the latter won by 7 wickets. Just 5 days after the game, CSK bowling Laxmipathy Balaji tested positive for Covid-19. A day later, Wriddhiman Saha also returned a positive Covid-19 result to become the fourth player at that time to contract the virus. The rising cases forced the Board of Control for Cricket in India to suspend the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 with immediate effect.

Michael Hussey was recuperating in Chennai after testing positive for Covid-19 (File Photo - TOI)
Michael Hussey was recuperating in Chennai after testing positive for Covid-19 (File Photo – TOI)

Barely 24 hours after the postponement of the league, CSK batting coach Michael Hussey also tested positive for Covid on May 5, taking the tournament’s Covid tally to 6. Wriddhiman Saha has now recovered from the virus and even returned home to Kolkata from Delhi to be with his family on May 18.

“We used the airport, landed in Delhi, and even played the CSK game there. So if I had contracted the virus at the airport, the symptoms could’ve shown up before or during the CSK game itself.

He now claims that he might have got the virus after mingling with the “CSK guys” post their game last month. KKR’s Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier, Delhi’s Amit Mishra, and SRH’s Wriddhiman Saha contracted the virus apart from the CSK coaching duo before IPL 2021’s premature postponement. Prasidh Krishna and Tim Seifert of KKR also contracted the virus after IPL 2021 was suspended.

Wriddhiman Saha Felt More Secure At UAE Bio Bubble Which Allowed Fewer People

The 36-year-old Bengal cricketer went on to add that playing IPL 2020 in the United Arab Emirates felt more secure as the people allowed inside the bio-bubble last year were much less compared to this season which is probably why there was a breach.

“When we played in the UAE last year, there used to be no one around us even during practice sessions. But here, we are sharing the space with groundsmen, people outside the ground are also peeping through the gates or over the wall. Nobody breached the bubble, so there must have been some small opening somewhere either through the driver, the Chennai team or somebody at the ground,” Saha said.

SunRisers Hyderabad
SunRisers Hyderabad. Image Credits: Twitter

SRH was placed last on the points table with just 1 win from 7 games before the IPL 2021 got postponed. Just 29 out of the scheduled 60 matches were played in the tournament till May 2. SRH management made the headlines when they relieved talisman David Warner of captaincy duties, all of a sudden, after the sixth match.

Phase 2 of the Indian Premier League – which will cover the remaining 31 matches of the 2021 edition, including the four knockout games – is set to be played in the United Arab Emirates between September and October. BCCI is likely to make the announcement on May 29 when the members assemble for a special general meeting.

Pat Cummins. (BCCL/IPL)
Pat Cummins. (BCCL/IPL)
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Everyone Thought IPL 2021 Going On Was Positive As Watching It On TV Offered Distraction To Covid-19, Says Pat Cummins

Pat Cummins, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) fast bowler, who flew to the Maldives after the suspension of IPL 2021, explained why everyone believed continuing the tournament was a good thing at that time.

Despite the covid-19 crisis in India deepening in the past few weeks, the Indian Premier League 2021 continued in the country for the entire month of April, inciting a debate. While some were of the view that the tournament should be halted keeping the things happening in the country, others felt that it should continue as it gave the people of India under lockdown a much-needed mode of distraction.

Pat Cummins
Pat Cummins[photo: Twitter]

Pat Cummins Never Felt Unsafe In India As Everyone Thought IPL 2021 Going On Was Positive

Unfortunately, as May rolled on, the covid entered IPL’s bio-bubble and with several players(Varun Chakravarthy, Sandeep Warrier, Amit Mishra, and Wriddhiman Saha) testing positive for the virus, the BCCI and IPL’s governing council decided mutually to suspend the tournament with immediate effect.

Varun Chakravarthy (File Photo)
Varun Chakravarthy (File Photo)

Kolkata Knight Riders fast bowler Pat Cummins, who flew to the Maldives after the tournament’s suspension, gave his insights on the above-mentioned debate and explained why everyone believed continuing the tournament was a good thing at the time.

“Seeing the media from back home, it [India’s pandemic] is huge news, and rightly so given what India is going through, but I’ve never felt unsafe here,” Cummins was quoted as saying by Sydney Morning Herald.

“I’ve felt quite helpless and quite detached from it all being kept in comfortable hotels,” he said.

“We were playing games and training as every other year. It just felt that I should be doing more for the people around us.The first thing I wanted to do was make sure playing the IPL was the right call. Speaking to people back home, some had the view that it didn’t see right cricket was going on over here in amongst all the COVID cases,” he added.

“But the response I was getting from people in India was the opposite. They all said that with so many people in a lockdown they really appreciate the fact that for three or four hours each night they can watch the IPL.”

“It gives people a routine, it helps to keep them in homes. Everyone thought it was a positive the IPL was still going on. I wondered what could I do? India has been so good to me for so long as a player.

“The people are amazing. I wanted to try and help out and give back a little bit. The IPL in the UAE last year was brilliant, it was really well run, but millions of people were saying it should have been played in India, so what do you do? You can see both sides. They set up this tournament with all the best advice,” he signed off.

Earlier, Pat Cummins wanted IPL 2021 to continue as he feels ending the tournament is not a solution. But IPL 2021 was suspended on Tuesday (May 04) after a string of fresh COVID-19 cases were reported across the bio-bubbles of four teams. A total of 4 players tested positive along with support staff at the CSK.

The BCCI hosted the entire edition of the IPL 2020 (last season) in the Middle East (UAE), across three venues – Sharjah, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai – which could serve as a potential venue of ‘IPL 2021 2nd phase’ this year as well.

Pat Cummins Donated $50,000 To Help India Fight Covid-19

Pat Cummins recently donated $50,000 to help India fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Later he issued a clarification from his official Twitter handle that he had decided to donate $50,000 to UNICEF Australia’s India COVID-19 Crisis Appeal and not to PM Cares fund.

File image of Pat Cummins | Andrew Boyers/Reuters
File image of Pat Cummins | Andrew Boyers/Reuters

While fans thanked the young Australian for his consideration and empathy towards the country, many told him that he should not have donated to the PM CARES program and that he would have been better off giving the money to some of the other NGOs instead.

Kolkata Knight Riders, IPL 2021
Pat Cummins[photo: Twitter]
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Pat Cummins Believes It’s Too Early To Decide The Venue For The T20I World Cup

Pat Cummins, Australia, and KKR pacer believes that it is too early to decide whether the T20I World cup should be held or not in India following the indefinite postponement of IPL 2021.

With the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League postponed due to the second wave of COVID-19 in India, all eyes have now shifted to whether the country will be in a position to host the T20 World Cup in October-November or if it needs to be moved to the UAE.

T20 World Cup trophy. (Photo Source: Twitter)
T20 World Cup trophy. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Pat Cummins: Too Early To Comment On T20I World Cup Venue As The Marquee Event Is Still 6 Months Away

In a Sydney Morning Herald report, the Kolkata Knight Riders pacer has said that it is for the cricket authorities to work on it with the Indian government and see what is best for the people.

“It probably too early to say. It’s six months away. The priority should be for cricket authorities to work with the Indian government to see what’s best for the Indian people,” Cummins told the Herald.

“If it’s going to be a drain on resources or it’s not going to be safe, then I don’t think it’s right to play it over here. That’s the first question which needs to be answered.”

Commenting on the COVID-19 situation in India, Cummins said: “I’ve felt quite helpless and quite detached from it all being kept in comfortable hotels. We were playing games and training as every other year. It just felt that I should be doing more for the people around us.”

IPL Trophy.
IPL Trophy. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

“The first thing I wanted to do was make sure playing the IPL was the right call. Speaking to people back home, some had the view that it didn’t see right cricket was going on over here in amongst all the COVID cases.”

“But the response I was getting from people in India was the opposite. They all said that with so many people in a lockdown they really appreciate the fact that for three or four hours each night they can watch the IPL. It gives people a routine, it helps to keep them in their homes. Everyone thought it was a positive the IPL was still going on.”
Earlier, Pat Cummins wanted IPL 2021 to continue as he feels ending the tournament is not a solution. But IPL 2021 was suspended on Tuesday (May 04) after a string of fresh COVID-19 cases were reported across the bio-bubbles of four teams. A total of 4 players tested positive along with support staff at the CSK.

Pat Cummins Felt He Should Do Something For Indian Citizens

Pat Cummins felt he should do something for the people in India and that saw him go ahead and help.

“I wondered what could I do? India has been so good to me for so long as a player. The people are amazing. I wanted to try and help out and give back a little bit.”

Pat Cummins
Pat Cummins (File Photo)

In fact, he was the first person to come out and speak about the contribution he made to help the Indian people fight the pandemic. Coming back to the IPL, Pat Cummins said with the benefit of hindsight, the IPL could have been played in UAE, but there were millions of people who wanted it to be held in India.

“The IPL in the UAE last year was brilliant, it was really well run, but millions of people were saying it should have been played in India, so what do you do? You can see both sides. They set up this tournament with all the best advice,” he pointed.

The BCCI hosted the entire edition of the IPL 2020 (last season) in the Middle East (UAE), across three venues – Sharjah, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai – which could serve as a potential venue of ‘IPL 2021 2nd phase’ this year as well.

Pat Cummins recently donated $50,000 to help India fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Later he issued a clarification from his official Twitter handle that he had decided to donate $50,000 to UNICEF Australia’s India COVID-19 Crisis Appeal and not to PM Cares fund.

While fans thanked the young Australian for his consideration and empathy towards the country, many told him that he should not have donated to the PM CARES program and that he would have been better off giving the money to some of the other NGOs instead.

Sourav Ganguly. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Sourav Ganguly. (Photo Source: Twitter)
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If We Fail To Complete The IPL, The Loss Will Be Close To INR 2500 Crore: Sourav Ganguly

Sourav Ganguly, BCCI president has said the board will face losses amounting to about Rs 2,500 crore if the remaining matches of IPL 2021 are not completed.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly on Thursday opened up on the resumption of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 later this year. He also revealed the board is staring at a staggering loss if the remaining matches of the tournament are not completed this year.

IPL Trophy
IPL Trophy, Image Credits: Twitter

Sourav Ganguly: BCCI To Speak To Other Boards And See Whether A Window Can Be Made Available Before The T20 World Cup

Sourav Ganguly said the board is looking at a window before the T20 World Cup this year to complete the remainder of the IPL 2021 season. The league was suspended on Tuesday (May 04) after a string of fresh COVID-19 cases were reported across the bio-bubbles of four teams. A total of 4 players ( 2 from Kolkata Knight Riders, and one each from Sunrisers Hyderabad and Delhi Capitals) tested positive along with support staff at the Chennai Super Kings (CSK).

Sourav Ganguly- Twitter
Sourav Ganguly- Twitter

Sourav Ganguly said BCCI will be talking to the board of the other countries to zero in on a slot later this year. He also stated that the board is staring at losses to the tune of around Rs 2,500 crore if the remaining games are not completed this year.

“There has got to be a lot of shuffling. Only a day has passed since we suspended the IPL. We have to speak to other boards and see if a window can be made available before the T20 World Cup,” Ganguly told The Telegraph.

The spike of positive cases in the bio-bubble had already resulted in the postponement of two IPL games. Varun Chakravarthy, Sandeep Warrier (both KKR), Laxmipathy Balaji, Michael Hussey (both CSK coaches), Amit Mishra (Delhi), and Wriddiman Saha (Hyderabad) tested positive during IPL 2021 prompting organizers to indefinitely postpone IPL after 29 matches were held.

Sourav Ganguly:  If BCCI Fail To Complete IPL, Loss Incurred Will Be Close To Rs. 2500 Crores According To Early Estimates

The sudden postponement of the IPL, combined with the situation in the country, has forced BCCI into looking at other options for the resumption of the tournament. Last year, the BCCI hosted the entire edition of IPL 2020 in UAE across three venues – Sharjah, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai – which could serve as a potential venue this year as well. The second option that is being explored is to stage the remaining season at the backend of the English season. The third option is to barter the hosting rights of the T20 World Cup with Australia.

“Lot of things are involved and we will slowly start working on them. If we fail to complete the IPL, the loss will be close to INR 2500 crore (USD 340 million approx). That is going by early estimates,” he added.

T20 World Cup trophy. (Photo Source: Twitter)
T20 World Cup trophy. (Photo Source: Twitter)

IPL 2021 was scheduled to conclude on May 30 but the tournament had to be halted after just 29 matches due to COVID-19. Last year, the full season of IPL was conducted smoothly in the UAE despite the pandemic and the BCCI is likely to take the same route once again this year to complete the remaining IPL 2021 matches.

IPL Governing Council chairman, Brijesh Patel, has confirmed that the BCCI is looking at pre and post-T20 World Cup windows to organize the remaining IPL 2021 games.  A group of counties in England has also expressed interest in hosting the remainder of the IPL 2021 season and has written to the ECB to extend their proposal to the BCCI.