Former India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar said the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) took the right precautionary measure by suspending the IPL and the remaining two ODIs between India and South Africa due to the coronavirus that has been spreading in India at a rapid pace.
IPL 2020 on Friday was deferred until April 15 in the wake of coronavirus pandemic. Meanwhile, the BCCI also decided to call off the ODI matches between India and South Africa in Lucknow (March 15) and Kolkata (March 18) and said the series would be rescheduled later.
“An absolutely fair call and congratulations to the BCCI for taking the step because the heath of the public and the health of the nation is so important,” Sunil Gavaskar told India Today.
“Because the coronavirus has been spreading and it was very very necessary to take the call. There are thousands of people who turn up for a match, there are so many people in the lobbies of the hotel and airports. So many people traveling on an aircraft. So yes, anybody could be infected and he could pass it on, so I think this is the most sensible decision taken by the BCCI.”
The decision came just a day after BCCI said the matches would be held behind closed doors. However, on Friday BCCI in a statement said they had decided to “reschedule” the series and that South Africa would visit India at a later date to play the 3-match series.
Asked if it was a possibility to play the remaining series in absence of spectators, Gavaskar said that option should only be explored as the last resort as no player likes to play in front of empty stands.