Taking into account the re-surge in the Covid-19 cases in India, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has decided to suspend all-age group tournaments indefinitely. In order to decide the new dates of the competitions, an assessment of the situation will be done after the conclusion of the Indian Premier League.
According to reports, BCCI secretary Jay Shah conveyed to the BCCI affiliates regarding the situation and the decision to suspend all age group competitions, via email. The decision popped up taking into consideration the requirement of teams to travel inter-city, which would require mandatory bio-bubble creation.
According to The Hindu, Shah stated in his mail saying, “While our endeavour was to get in as many matches as was practicable across different age groups in the season, prevailing circumstances have now forced us to suspend all age-group tournaments. The domestic season 2020-21 started unusually late owing to the countrywide lockdown on account of the global pandemic. The pandemic meant that we had to wait until January 2021 to start our domestic season and as discussed in the 89th AGM, we began our season by hosting the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy ahead of the IPL Auction.”
The domestic T20 tournament was followed by the recently concluded Vijay Hazare Trophy, which was successfully conducted at different cities in India. With the ongoing limited overs’ tournaments organized by BCCI for the senior men and women, the governing body had also announced about the under-19 boys’ one-day tournament.
However, with the current scenario and the consequent decision of the board, no junior level cricket tournament (Vinoo Mankad Trophy or the Cooch Behar Trophy) will be held until the end of IPL. The BCCI Secretary confirmed that they will continue to look for a window where they can organise age group tournaments after IPL.
The recent spike in COVID cases across the country has forced BCCI to take numerous difficult decisions. The three T-20 games and ODI series between England and India will take place behind closed doors, while IPL 2021 will be played without fans in stadium. BCCI is reportedly open to bringing spectators back to stadiums in the latter stages of IPL 2021.
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