T20 World Cup postponement gives IPL hopes a big boost

The Twenty20 World Cup will be held in Australia next year. (AFP)
The Twenty20 World Cup will be held in Australia next year. (AFP)

Dubai - It gives us the best possible opportunity of delivering two safe and successful T20 World Cups for fans around the world, ICC chief executive Manu Sawhney said



By Rituraj Borkakoty

Published: Tue 21 Jul 2020, 8:45 PM

Ending months of speculations and endless debates, the Twenty20 World Cup, which was scheduled to begin in Australia on October 18 this year, finally joined the list of high-profile global sporting events that have been postponed in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The showpiece T20 event in international cricket was pushed back to 2021 by the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Monday, paving the way for the BCCI to use the same window to stage the delayed Indian Premier League (IPL).
The cash-rich IPL, the domestic Indian T20 league that draws the biggest international superstars and generates $11 billion a year, has been postponed indefinitely due to the pandemic.

But now the postponement of the Twenty20 World Cup will reinvigorate the BCCI as it looks to stage the event in a foreign country, keeping in mind the disturbing rise in the coronavirus cases in India.
And it's the UAE that has emerged as the strongest contender to host the 2020 IPL, having staged the first part of the tournament in 2014.
"If the BCCI chooses UAE as the venue for the IPL, we will work with them and provide them all the support," Mubashir Usmani, general secretary of the Emirates Cricket Board, said on Sunday.
"The Emirates Cricket Board is ready and willing to provide all the support to the Indian cricket board whenever they opt to host (the IPL) outside India.
"But at the moment we haven't received any official thing from the BCCI about hosting it in the UAE. As soon as we receive it, we will definitely follow it up with BCCI as it is their event. It all depends upon them."
While the UAE has played a leading role in bringing sports back to life following the Covid-19-enforced break by staging the UFC Fight Island in an 11-km 'safe zone' in Abu Dhabi, the travel restrictions in Australia made it impossible for the government Down Under to stage the 16-team Twenty20 World Cup in October-November.
Hence, the ICC decided to push the Twenty20 World Cup to 2021. Which means the 2021 Twenty World Cup, which India was scheduled to host, will be held in 2022.
The ICC also pushed the 2023 50-over World Cup in India by eight months. The 50-over World Cup, which was scheduled for February and March, 2023, will be hosted by India in October and November that year.
"We have undertaken a comprehensive and complex contingency planning exercise and through this process, our number one priority has been to protect the health and safety of everyone involved in the sport," ICC chief executive Manu Sawhney said on Monday.
"The decision to postpone the ICC Men's T20 World Cup was taken after careful consideration of all of the options available to us and gives us the best possible opportunity of delivering two safe and successful T20 World Cups for fans around the world.
"Moving the Men's Cricket World Cup to a later window gives us a better chance of maintaining the integrity of the qualification process. This additional time will be used to reschedule games that might be lost because of the pandemic ensuring qualification can be decided on the field of play."
rituraj@khaleejtimes.com


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