On Wednesday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has confirmed that the much-awaited remainder of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 will be played between September 19 and October 15 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The fourteenth season of the cash-rich league was postponed midway after the completion of 29 fixtures as COVID-19 had breached the bio-bubble of different franchises and had infected few players along with staff members.
As many as 31 matches are left to be played in the 2021 edition of the lucrative league. So now, the second half of the tournament will take place in UAE.
“IPL will be held between September 19 and October 15,” BCCI vice-president Rajeev Shukla told IANS.
The final date of the IPL 2021 remainder is pretty much close to the start of the T20 World Cup 2021 that is supposed to begin around mid-October. Although the International Cricket Council (ICC) has not officially announced the fixtures of the T20 World Cup, sources reckon that the global showpiece event might start from October 18. The mega event will be hosted by the BCCI and is most likely to occur in UAE.
Asked if the gap is going to be too small for players to switch from IPL to T20 World Cup, Mr Shukla opined that the small gap is not a worry as the early phase of T20 World is likely to involve non-Test playing nations.
“There should be no problem with the gap. The first phase of the T20 World Cup will comprise qualifiers [according to BCCI’s knowledge]. So the major teams like India and others will get sufficient gap,” added Mr Shukla.
As many as 16 teams are participating in the 2021 T20 World Cup, including five non-Test playing nations. These countries are Papua New Guinea, Namibia, the Netherlands, Oman and Scotland.
An official of the international apex body said that the dates and venues of the upcoming mega event would only be released in July.
“We will release the dates and venue of T20 World Cup only in July. We cannot comment on it as of now. The ICC needs 10 days to prepare the pitch and the ground ahead of an event. That too is a norm and not a rule,” said an ICC official.