The coronavirus pandemic has affected many of the major cricketing tournaments including the Indian Premier League (IPL) and clouds of doubt hover over the T20 World Cup scheduled to take place in Australia later this year. While the recent guidelines of the Lockdown 4 will allow net practices and matches behind closed but given the surge in the COVID-19 positive cases it seems unlikely to happen anytime soon.
Meanwhile, BCCI CEO Rahul Johri has said that cricketing activity can start ‘in earnest’ only post the monsoon but he remained ‘optimistic’ about the Indian Premier League (IPL) happening this year. Repeating that the safety of the player is crucial, Johri said that individuals should be left to decide what’s best for them in the context of the unprecedented crisis that the COVID-19 pandemic has turned out to be.
Johri said, “Every individual has the right to decide on their safety and one should respect that.” He further added, “We are going to be guided by the Government of India in its entirety, whatever are the government guidelines is what we’ll follow…Cricketing activity in earnest can start practically only after the monsoon season.”
As India’s monsoon season lasts from June to September, there are speculations that IPL will be played between October to November window if the T20 World Cup in Australia gets postponed. The decision about the same will be taken according to the circumstances in the future as right now nothing is in control.
Talking about the IPL, Johri didn’t favor an Indians-only competition, a suggestion which was prompted by the international flight restrictions due to the pandemic. However, he also highlighted the many logistical issues that would occur due to the latest safety measures to reduce the risk of infection
A 14-day quarantine is being mentioned as one of the compulsory safety measures which are likely to have a huge impact on the overall schedule.