As the Ministry of Home affairs were set to release the guidelines of the fourth phase of the lockdown that involved a list of things that will be allowed and prohibited, cricket enthusiasts were keenly waiting for news of the return of the Indian Premier League.
The Indian Premier League, the annual festival for cricket lovers, was supposed to begin in March. Due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, the board of control for cricket in India pushed it to April hoping things would get better. Much to their disappointment, the number of cases refused to slow down as international travel was suspended and so was the tournament indefinitely.
As the people keenly await the return or at least to know the possibility of its return, here’s what is known so far about the Indian Premier League’s return.
Even though the Indian Premiere was set to commence, since there is a ban on international travel, there will be zero participation of foreign players from England, South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia. All these countries have suspended international travel indefinitely.
Domestic movement restriction
The domestic flights in India too has been suspended currently. Barring few flights that are flying to bring back stranded people from other places, the rest are yet to resume. Although the flight bookings were earlier open, now they have been postponed indefinitely. The center is yet to announce the date when the flights will be resumed.
The Board prioritizes safety
Arun Dhumal, the BCCI Treasurer, spoke to ESPNCricinfo and said,
“The board reiterates that the safety and well-being of its athletes and support staff is paramount and will not rush into any decision that can hamper or jeopardize India’s efforts in containing the spread of the virus.”
IPL to be conducted later in the year?
The treasurer answered to the question of the possibility of the tournament being conducted later in the year when everything is hopefully normal. He said,
“A window would first need to open up in the cricket calendar in addition to governments worldwide allowing international travel so that overseas players’ participation could be guaranteed.”
Cricket related activities under a blanket ban in Maharashtra and Karnataka
Although the center has given a go-ahead to the states to allow sporting activities, the final decision lies with the state authority. The states Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka have continued complete lockdown.
Source: Free Press Journal