New Zealand, an island nation, which has set example with the way it has contained COVID-19 has now offered to host the IPL 2020. The offer made by New Zealand comes after Sri Lanka and United Arab Emirates (UAE) already placed their bid to host the lucrative tournament. It however remains uncertain where the IPL 2020 will take place, if it is not called 0ff.
The parent body of the IPL 2020 has kept various options open for the tournament to commence. The board CEO had said that the IPL 2020 might take place in India with international stars after the monsoon. However, with the situation due to COVID-19 worsening everyday in the country, the call to open up its international borders will not be an appropriate choice.
Amid other possibilities, hosting the tournament in overseas nation such as Sri Lanka and UAE has been kept as an option. Now with New Zealand offering to host the board has wider scopes. It has also been reported that the entire IPL 2020 could be hosted in the worst-hit city of Mumbai which gives a better sense of the number of options the board is keeping open.
“Staging the event in India has to be the first choice but in case it is not safe to have it, then we will look at the overseas options. UAE, Sri Lanka and New Zealand have also offered to host the IPL,” a senior BCCI official told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
“We will sit down with all stakeholders (broadcaster, teams, etc) and take a call. The safety of the players is paramount. There will be no compromise on that,” the official said.
As per the original schedule, IPL 2020 was to begin from March 29 but it was first deferred to April 15 before being postponed indefinitely as the parent body has been stubborn on their wait and watch policy.
The cricket board might incur a loss of Rs. 4000 crore if the lucrative tournament is called-off.