With IPL being postponed indefinitely, Times of India has reported that BCCI have potentially shortlisted the United Kingdom, Australia and the Middle East as three venues for resumption of the tournament. Last year, the entire edition of the IPL was hosted in the Middle East without much worry.
The sudden postponement of the IPL, combined with the situation in the country, has forced BCCI into looking at other options for the resumption of the tournament. Last year, the BCCI hosted the entire edition of the cash-rich tournament in the Middle East, across three venues - Sharjah, Abu Dhabi and Dubai - which could serve as a potential venue this year as well.
According to a report from TOI, the BCCI are also looking at Australia and the United Kingdom as two major options, especially the latter, with the Indian team touring for a long Test series. The report suggested that BCCI could host the tournament in UAE post the England tour, before the start of the World T20.
“If the World Cup is shifted, the whole scheduling will get re-worked anyway,” said those in the know. However, they added: “Weather will be a problem because September remains a very hot month and UAE only begins to cool down October onwards,” TOI reported.
“It has to be played overseas. Certain suggestions have already been heard. The BCCI just has to make up its mind,” top sources in the board said.
Another prime option - the United Kingdom - has emerged keeping an eye on UAE being used as a host destination for the global T20 tournament, World T20. In that case, the BCCI will continue their tour to the UK, with the last leg of the IPL.
“The weather will be good for cricket. It will suit the broadcaster too because time zones can be adjusted and overseas players from outside of India and England will be willing to travel,” they add.
However, the third option - Australia - the BCCI believes that Cricket Australia won’t mind the exchange. But given that Australia have closed their borders with India, in the recent times, it is yet to be seen if things improve between the two countries.
“Cricket Australia certainly won’t mind this exchange if their government allows. And since international players will anyway arrive there for the World Cup, Perth – which is three-and-half-hours ahead of Indian Standard Time – can host Phase-2 to cater to Indian prime-time,” sources said.