To seek extension of time from ICC to take an appropriate call on the hosting of T20 World Cup
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), on Saturday, decided to move the suspended Indian Premier League (IPL) to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in September-October and authorised office-bearers to buy more time from the International Cricket Counil (ICC) for finalising the T20 World Cup venue.
“The BCCI announced to complete the remaining matches of IPL 2021 in UAE considering the monsoon season in India in the months of September-October this year,” Jay Shah, BCCI secretary, said in a statement released after Saturday’s Special General Meeting (SGM).
“The SGM further authorised the office-bearers to seek extension from ICC to take an appropriate call on the hosting of ICC T20 World Cup 2021.”
The Hindu understands that IPL chairman Brijesh Patel and IPL chief operating officer Hemang Amin are awaiting clearance from UAE authorities to leave for the Gulf and start dialogue and preparation for IPL’s return to its last year’s venue.
Only viable option
The office-bearers are understood to have stressed the September-October window and UAE as the venue being the only viable option for completing the IPL, suspended on May 4 due to COVID-19.
While the BCCI is looking at the window between Sept. 20 and Oct. 10 for pulling off the IPL, the Caribbean Premier League final is scheduled on Sept. 19. Besides, England and Australia have international commitments.
“When we raised concerns about overseas players’ availability, the president (Sourav Ganguly) informed the house that the BCCI is consulting other boards and stressed that the IPL will go ahead with whosoever is available,” a member who attended the meeting said.
Many representatives were bemused when the resolution about the IPL cited “monsoon” as the reason instead of COVID-19 outbreak. “It was understandable considering the desperation to host the T20 World Cup immediately after the IPL but, in such a case, it would have been better had the resolution not cited any reason at all,” said another member.
On June 1, the ICC Board is scheduled to discuss the T20 World Cup venue. The BCCI office-bearers briefed that a month-long extension will help them resolve the COVID-19 proof plan and the tax rebate issue with the ICC. The ICC’s Annual Conference is scheduled from July 18.