Breaking: IPL 2020 to be played in UAE, tournament could be curtailed to 5 or 6 weeks

Written by N Krishnamurthy

This year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) will be played in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Cricket Age reliably learns. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has zeroed in the UAE to host the league, if the International Cricket Council (ICC) postpones the T20 World Cup, scheduled for October-November.

The BCCI also came to the conclusion that a final decision would be taken once the ICC postpones the 2020 T20 World Cup. The decision on ICC will be announced most probably next week after the ICC Meeting scheduled for Monday.

The development came after the BCCI Apex Council meeting which was held via teleconference on Monday. The road map for IPL 2020 was among the primary item in a 11-point agenda marked for the meeting.

UAE, which had hosted the first leg of IPL in 2014, was zeroed in as the frontrunner as the board expects the quarantine period to come down to a day or so during the window targetted for the IPL.

UAE’s lesser quarantine period rule made it easy for BCCI to select the nation as the frontrunner for hosting the cash-rich league. Other points like UAE being a travel hub, having good flight connections and medical facilities added up to the benefit of the gulf nation.

It was also learnt that IPL 13 would be “somewhat” curtailed and will be held between September and early November.

During the meeting, the training camp for the players of the Indian national team also came up for discussion. Dharamsala and Ahmedabad were discussed as two options where a bio-bubble can be created but then Dharamsala was ruled out because of lack of accommodation.

Ahmedabad now seems to be the place where training can happen if BCCI conducts a training camp for the players. It was said that Players cannot train at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) because of the existing situation with regards to Covid-19.

Cricket Age had published earlier in the day that the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) has started gearing up to host Indian Premier League and the Indian players for training camp.

The tournament brings in almost 4,000 crores of revenue to the Indian cricket board from global broadcasting rights and sponsorship.

The eight franchises each get a 50 per cent share of BCCI’s revenue from broadcast right. IPL teams can make a profit of anything between 100-150 crores a season.

UAE has hosted the IPL before. In 2014, a portion of the IPL was held in Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi because some 20 matches of the initial phase was clashing with the general elections.

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N Krishnamurthy