With the COVID-19 pandemic bringing the cricketing world to a halt, there is still limited clarity about the fate of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The new season, which was the 13th edition of the tournament was originally scheduled for March 29. However, it was decided this month by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) that the high-profile league will be pushed back till April 15, as a result of the ongoing outbreak.
As per government order, India is under a 21-day lockdown. That being said, it's quite easy to assume that the IPL is more than likely to be postponed further away from April. With speculations going around that it might take three months for things to get slightly better, the BCCI might now look to schedule the tournament by the end of the year.
According to reports, the governing body is keeping an eye at the October-November window to host the 13th edition of the IPL. But if that does happens, it would mean that the International Cricket Council (ICC) would have to postpone the Men's T20 World Cup that was supposed to be held in the given time period. The T20 World Cup was scheduled for October-November, but since Australia has decided to seal its border for the next six months, the mega event is in serious doubt.
A BCCI official did weigh into this by emphasizing that the IPL 2020 could still take place, provided the Men's T20 World Cup gets postponed.
At present, there is a lockdown of borders and while Australia has said it is a potential six-month lockdown, things can change with an improvement in the scenario. UK could follow the same pattern considering the spread of the pandemic. We are still to understand what the Indian government will decide with regards to closing the international borders. In such a scenario, the only window that looks safe is the October-November one. But again, that collides with the T20 World Cup.
So, if the ICC does go ahead and decides to postpone the T20 World Cup due to the current scenario, only then we can look at the October-November window because even if a six-month border closedown is ordered by every country from say now, it ends by the start of October. But again, for that, the spread of the coronavirus needs to be stopped and things must come under human control. In short, there will have to be a lot of maths, the official said.
Again, it would be the last step for the ICC to push the T20 World Cup from 2020 to 2022 because there is no window in 2021. So, at the moment, it is all a bit too far-fetched to be honest. But yes, the October-November window has been spoken about for the IPL, but a lot of external factors need to fall into place for that to become a reality, the official added.
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