The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Indian Premier League Governing Council (IPL GC) in an emergency meeting unanimously decided to suspend the IPL 2021 season. The massive decision comes after KKR players Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier, as well as, CSK team 2021 CEO Kasi Viswanathan, bowling coach Lakshimpathy Balaji and a bus cleaner tested positive for COVID-19. Now, uncertainty is looming over the players over when will the Indian Premier League will be resumed and whether there will be any change in venues?
As per reports, BCCI officials have said that IPL 2021 is only being postponed and not cancelled. A new date for the tournament is expected to be decided by next week, once clearance is obtained to shift the entire tournament to Mumbai. The teams will remain in bio-bubble, the report claims.
As Maharashtra is also gravely affected by the second wave of coronavirus, the reports of shifting the remaining fixtures of IPL 2021 to Mumbai have raised many eyebrows. Going by the reports of ESPNCricinfo, the BCCI is seriously considering the idea of shifting the remaining games of the season entirely to Mumbai and push the final of the tournament from May 30 to early June. The tournament could be shifted as early as May 7 to the new host city. For now, only one or two doubleheaders are held every week in the IPL 2021 but the board might have to reschedule the rest of the games, putting more double-headers in place in order to finish the season on time.
It is to be noted that Mumbai has three international cricket stadiums namely- D Y Patil Sports Stadium, Brabourne Stadium, and Wankhede Stadium. IPL matches have been organised in these cricket stadiums along with Wankhede Stadium in the past. In fact, these stadiums were also assigned to various franchises for practice in the IPL 2021. The Pune stadium is also not far, accessible easily via the Mumbai-Pune expressway.
However, shifting of all the franchises in Mumbai will require lots of effort. As per reports, the BCCI made calls on Monday to the top hotels in Mumbai to enquire about the availability and how efficiently they could execute the SOPs needed to create the bio- bubble.
(Image Credits: PTI/Twitter/IPL)
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