Brijesh Patel, the chairman of IPL Governing Council (GC), has insisted the BCCI has not given up on hosting the tournament this year. The thirteenth edition of the IPL was scheduled to start on March 29 and end on May 17.
But in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, the BCCI suspended the league till mid-April before suspending it indefinitely. With the cases in India rising constantly at an alarming rate, the chances of the tournament taking place in the country any time soon looks very bleak.
However, Brijesh Patel has insisted that the board is still hopeful of conducting the tournament this year. He stated that the BCCI has been continuing its contingency plans for IPL 2020. Brijesh Patel said the governing body is looking at the September-October window to host the IPL.
He further said that the board is waiting for the International Cricket Council (ICC) to take a call on the T20 World Cup, which is slated to be held from October 18 to November 15 in Australia. While speculations are rife that the T20 World Cup is set to be postponed, the ICC, after its board meeting on June 10, said it will wait until July to take a final call on the 16-team world tournament.
“Yeah (chances of hosting IPL in 2020), we are looking at the September-October window,” Brijesh Patel told India Today.
“Yeah, we are continuing the planning. It all depends on the World Cup. We will have a decision after the ICC decision. We will go ahead with the plans after the ICC decision comes,” he added.
Earlier, BCCI president Sourav Ganguly confirmed that the apex body of Indian cricket is ready to host the IPL behind closed doors and is working on “all possible options”. In a letter addressed to the state bodies, Ganguly said he is optimistic that the BCCI will be able to decide a future course of action soon.
IPL in empty stadiums:
Brijesh Patel also said India is the first choice venue to host the IPL but the BCCI will take into account the Covid-19 situation during September and October and consult with the government before taking a final call. Sri Lanka and UAE have expressed their desire of hosting the tournament.
“It depends on how the situation is. We have to consider the Covid-19 situation at that point in time. Then we will decide where to host it. India is the first preference to host the IPL,” Patel said.