The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has prompted worldwide cricketing activities to come to a standstill. The much-awaited Indian Premier League 2020 (IPL 2020) was recently postponed by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) until further notice. Even the looming T20 World Cup in October this year is clouded with much uncertainty at the moment. Speaking with respect to the lack of sporting activities, former England captain Kevin Pietersen recently endorsed the idea of organising cricket matches behind closed doors.
In an interview with the Daily Mail, Kevin Pietersen said that the morale among sporting fans across the world is “down in the dumps”. He emphasised the importance of a bit of a morale booster for the public by saying that professional cricket should resume behind closed doors until a vaccine for the contagious disease is found. He said that sportsmen will have to deal with playing without crowds due to the current situation on a temporary basis because he believes that some sportspersons are currently in the “prime of their lives”.
Kevin Pietersen also pointed out the fact since crowds will not be in attendance in such a case, broadcasters will garner huge viewership once action resumes. The 39-year-old also said that as the situation is affecting the entire cricketing world, everyone is “in this together”. Kevin Pietersen cited the examples of Virat Kohli among other cricketers while stating the same and said that the situation calls for everyone to gather and make “good decisions together”.
Recently, Ben Stokes seconded his countryman Kevin Pietersen's opinion. Ben Stokes feels that the competitiveness of international cricket will not diminish with no crowds in the stadium.
Interestingly, Kevin Pietersen mentioned the name of the Indian captain Virat Kohli. Both Pietersen and Virat Kohli are known to be good friends on and off the field, having been a part of an Instagram live chat together a few weeks ago. The two cricketers were part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) side during Kevin Pietersen’s two-year stint (2009-2010) with the franchise in the IPL. While Kevin Pietersen retired from all forms of cricket in 2018, Virat Kohli continues to serve RCB in the IPL as captain.