IPL will welcome fans back to stadiums in UAE, says BCCI

Team KT/Dubai
Filed on September 15, 2021 | Last updated on September 15, 2021 at 11.05 pm
Mumbai Indians will take on Chennai Super Kings in the first game at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on September 19. (AFP file)

Fans can buy tickets from September 16 for the remainder of the tournament on the official website

The likes of Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Rishabh Pant, Kagiso Rabada and Steve Smith will have their adoring fans applauding their performances in UAE when the world’s biggest franchise league resumes on Sunday.

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The resumption of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in UAE will also see the return of the proverbial 12th man — fan — at the stadiums in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah when the pandemic-disrupted T20 league restarts here on September 19.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) confirmed on Wednesday that fans would be allowed to attend the remaining IPL matches in UAE.

Defending champions Mumbai Indians will face Chennai Super Kings in the first match when the tournament resumes at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Sunday.

“This match will be a momentous occasion as IPL will welcome the fans back to the stadiums after a brief hiatus owing to Covid-19 situation,” said an IPL statement.

The BCCI was forced to suspend the IPL in May with 31 matches left to play after the Covid-19 virus breached the bio-bubble, infecting several players and back room staff across teams when India was grappling with a deadly second wave of the pandemic.

Having staged a highly successful IPL in a safe and secure environment last year in UAE, the BCCI decided to bring the remaining matches of the 2021 season here.

“Matches will be played at Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi with limited seating available keeping in mind the Covid protocols and UAE government regulations,” the Indian cricket board said on Wednesday.

The organisers did not reveal the number of fans that can attend matches in the IPL. It’s expected that only the vaccinated fans will be allowed in the matches during the tournament.

The tickets for the remaining matches of the popular T20 tournament will go on sale from Thursday, the cricket board said.

“Fans can buy tickets from September 16 for the remainder of the tournament on the official website Tickets can also be purchased on,” BCCI said.

The 2020 edition of the cash-rich league was held behind closed doors in UAE and the first leg of this year’s event in India was also staged in front of empty stands.

Cricket will now follow football in allowing fans back at the UAE stadiums.

Last month, the UAE Pro League, in coordination with the UAE Football Association and the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority, had announced the return of vaccinated fans to stadiums at 60 per cent capacity in Pro League, Pro League Cup and UAE Super Cup football matches for the 2021-2022 season.

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