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UAE has now been officially confirmed as the venue for the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The BCCI, on Monday, finally received the central government’s approval to move the tournament outside the country. IPL chairman Brijesh Patel has confirmed the big development.

BCCI has been compelled to stage the competition in UAE because of the alarming coronavirus situation in the country. Last week, the IPL Governing Council had confirmed the venue and the dates for IPL 2020. The much-anticipated season of the tournament will start on September 19 while the final is scheduled to take place on November 20. The tournament will be held in three cities — Sharjah, Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Last week, the government had last week given an “in principle” go-ahead to the BCCI to shift the marquee league to the UAE due to rising cases of Covid-19 in the country. The BCCI has now received the mandatory written permission from the authorities. India sports bodies need clearance from Home, External and sports ministries when they shift a domestic tournament abroad.

Mumbai Indians
Mumbai Indians are the defending IPL champions (Credits: BCCI)

“Yes, we have received all the written approvals,” Patel told PTI when asked whether the permission has come in writing from both the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).

“Once we had the verbal okay from the government, we had intimated the Emirates Cricket Board. Now we have the papers also, so franchises can be intimated that everything is in order,” a veteran BCCI official said.

All the eight teams will be leaving for UAE later this month. The BCCI has already told the franchises they can leave India only after August 20. Also, the teams will be flying to UAE only after two mandatory RT-PCR (COVID-19 tests) conducted within 24 hours from their departure base.

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