Recently, IPL 2021 has been postponed indefinitely after a few players tested positive for coronavirus. The BCCI took this decision to cancel the IPL keeping in mind the safety of players.
Although the decision to cancel the IPL came as a shock to cricket fans who are too attached with the IPL. Now speculations are rife as when and where the remainder of the IPL will be organized.
Given the worsening situation of virus in India as well as possibility of the third wave of the virus, it is very unlikely for the IPL to be held in the india.
Recently, Sourav Ganguly put down all the speculations regarding the IPL saying the BCCI will explore the possibilities to organize the IPL out of India as it is not feasible to conduct the IPL in India.
“India is supposed to go to Sri Lanka for three ODIs and five T20Is. There are lots of organisational hazards like 14-day quarantine. It (IPL 2021) can’t happen in India. This quarantine is tough to handle. Too early to say how we can find a slot to complete the IPL,” Sourav Ganguly told SportStar.
Moreover, four countries have expressed their desire to host the remainder of the 31 matches of the IPL- Australia, Sri lanka, UAE, England.
BCCI and IPL authorities are taking all the precautions and looking at all the options before taking the final call regarding the fate of the IPL. The final decision regarding the same can come as early as mid-June.
“There has got to be a lot of shuffling. We have to speak to other boards and see if a window can be made available before the T20 World Cup,” Ganguly had earlier told The Telegraph.
He would like to prevent the losses as BCCI might end losing Rs 2,500 crore if the remaining part of IPL 2021 do not take place.
“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.
IPL Governing Council Chairman Brijesh Patel also informed that the September window will be explored after speaking to other boards.
“We have to look for a window. If we get one, we will explore holding it. We’ll have to see if it is possible in September. We need to examine the plans of the ICC and other boards,” Patel said.
IPL 2021 Remaining Matches: Options in front of BCCI
With a lot of countries throwing their hat in the ring for the remainder of IPL 2021, four major nations have cropped up on the probable list. Let’s have a look at the probable options.
Option 1 –UAE
The first and most likely option is to take the league to the UAE. BCCI had conducted a successful IPL 2020 and might follow the same route for the remaining games. Furthermore, given the current situation, UAE can also be the venue for the upcoming T20 World Cup. The Indian players will finish their England tour on September 14, after which they can fly to UAE and serve the week’s quarantine and finish the matches.
Option 2 – England
Moving to the United Kingdom is another option that is on the table. The BCCI can make use of the end of English summer to conclude the league. The Indian team will travel to England by the end of May for the World Test Championship in June against New Zealand. They will be stationed there until the completion of the five-Test series against England.
Various English Counties in and around London have collectively offered to host the IPL – It can be a safe option but also to hold any matches in the United Kingdom is a much more costly affair than holding the tournament in UAE. So, it is unlikely the BCCI would take those extra costs.
Option 3 – Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka is planning to host the Lanka Premier League (LPL) from July to August. On that basis they have claimed they will be ready to host IPL 2021 Phase 2 on the same grounds and facilities. But it is unlikely that the BCCI will pay heed much to their offer. Reason, neither teams – nor players will be inclined to travel to Sri Lanka right before the World Cup in UAE.
Option 4: Australia
The Down Under is the third option suggested to the BCCI. If the BCCI decides, and the Australian government eases its policies in the next four months, Australia also is in fray to host the Indian Premier League.
Again it is just an option which the BCCI is not likely to explore. From England the entire IPL Zing-Bang flies to Australia and then flies back to UAE or India for the T20 World Cup is too much to ask for. So the option according to InsideSport is likely to be ruled out.