Ganguly clears air on IPL 2020 return

IPL 2020
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Some delight for IPL fans came in when BCCI president Sourav Ganguly indicated on the prospects of the glitzy league on the night of June 10. 

Former India captain declared to its state units that the board will conduct the Indian Premier League 2020, even if it is to be organised sans fans. Ganguly also insisted that all possible options are being explored to ensure that the suspended event takes place despite the raging pandemic.

“The BCCI is working on all possible options to ensure that we are able to stage the IPL this year, even if it means playing the tournament in empty stadiums,” Ganguly wrote in a letter to all the affiliated units sent late on Wednesday after the ICC Board meeting.

“The fans, franchises, players, broadcasters, sponsors and all other stakeholders are keenly looking forward to the possibility of IPL being hosted this year,” the former swashbuckler said. “Recently, a lot of players both from India and other countries, participating in the IPL have shown keenness on being part of this year’s IPL. We are optimistic and the BCCI will shortly decide on the future course of action on this,” Ganguly added.

IPL governing council chairman Brijesh Patel has gone one step ahead to declare the window of the IPL 2020.

“We are looking at the September-October window but that is subject to the postponement of the Asia Cup and T20 World Cup. We will also have to follow the government guidelines at that time,” Patel confirmed to PTI.

Patel also said that talks with all the stakeholders have started and as soon as the official confirmations about the T20 World Cup postponement arrive, BCCI will announce the IPL 2020 schedule officially.

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The Asia Cup is scheduled in September and T20 World Cup in October-November. The fate of both the events is not decided yet, with the ICC likely to take a call on the World Cup in Australia next month.

Considering the rising cases of Coronavirus in India, there is an option to organise the league overseas. The UAE and Sri Lanka have already shown interest in hosting the world’s biggest T20 league. Patel also said that, first preference will of course be India but a lot will depend on the situation at that time.

Earlier, Knight Riders CEO Venky Mysore also asserted that any tinkering in the IPL format to make space for it in the virus-hit calendar will not be acceptable. All the franchisees want the event to be held in its complete form.

The IPL was postponed indefinitely after a lockdown to contain the Covid-19 pandemic came into force in March.

Now that the decision about the prospect of the IPL has come to the fore, it has given impetus to a whole lot of debate among the fans who are desperately praying to see the pioneer fanfare T20 league (IPL) finally happening with brimful of hope. Although, the cloud of uncertainty still looms whether fans will be a part of this mega league or not in the stadiums. For it is them who infuse drama, extravaganza and emotions to this popular premier league and make the game even more glitzy.

This will certainly affect the morale of both the game and the cricketers. However, it would be interesting to see them adjusting to the empty stadiums, devoid of cheering spectators if the Board decides to hold IPL without fans.

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