The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has urged not only the BCCI but also other sporting federations to reconsider a host of aspects attached to it. From reshuffling the schedule of the matches and tournaments to deciding the venues for the upcoming fixtures based on safety, it has forced to revisit everything. Amid all this, the Board is looking to shift the national training camp from the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru to Dharamshala.
The Indian Government had suspended international and domestic flights in India since more than a month to curb the spread of the virus. But during the current phase of the lockdown, the civil aviation ministry announced that domestic flights would begin to operate from the 25th of May.
Hence, treasurer Arun Dhumal has considered exploring safe zones to hold the national camp.
Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh has emerged as one of the safe zones. Dhumal said that being his state association, he wouldn’t stress it; however, if BCCI thinks it’s the way to go, he’ll be glad to offer it and make necessary arrangements. He went on to say that if the Government provides the clearance, the association will do everything their power to make it safe from the outbreak.
“Since it’s my state association, I would never, from my end, push it but if after exploring options, BCCI finds that Dharamsala can have a camp, I am more than ready to make all the arrangements. Even the hotel where the Indian team stays ‘Pavilion’ is HPCA property,” Dhumal said as quoted by News18.
“In case, the situation in Himachal is under control and it’s considered to be a safe zone as per government protocols, the HPCA will then do everything to make it a bio-secure environment. It all depends on what is best available option,” he added.
Dharamshala was booked as the venue for the first ODI between India and South Africa:
As a matter of fact, the stadium in Dharamshala was where the opening ODI between India and South Africa was to take place this March. The three-game ODI series stood suspended in light of the virus outbreak after the first game resulted in washout due to rains. After that, the BCCI also the Indian Premier League (IPL) after postponing it once. Himachal Pradesh has recorded more than 100 cases of COVID-19 with four casualties.