After constant speculation surrounding the fate of IPL 2021, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has confirmed on Saturday that the tournament will resume in UAE. The lucrative T-20 tournament will take place during September-October window later this year. The Indian board made the decision during a special general meeting on Saturday.
BCCI was forced to suspend IPL 2021 after three weeks at the start of May due to numerous covid cases in the bio-bubbles of four teams. Even though there was no window for the tournament in 2021, BCCI kept on insisting that the tournament is suspended instead of immediate cancellation.
The window between September and October will be vacant for Indian players. However, there are doubts regarding the participation of players from other countries. England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has already confirmed that English players will not take part in the tournament due to a tough and tight schedule for the English cricket team. BCCI will reportedly hold talks with other boards to allow players to participate in IPL 2021.
The resumption of IPL 2021 is a big financial boost for BCCI. Sourav Ganguly, BCCI president, had warned that the board will suffer losses worth thousands of crores if the tournament is cancelled. Since BCCI had successfully organised IPL 2020 in UAE, they will be confident about pulling off the remainder of IPL 2021 this year.
However, the fatigue for key Indian players is going to increase further after this assumption. Indian team is scheduled to play five test matches against England and one World Test Championship final against New Zealand in the next three months. They will have no rest at all after such a challenging tour since IPL 2021 will be on the horizon. It remains to be seen whether BCCI will be able to tweak the schedule of the series against England.
Meanwhile, BCCI has not made a final decision on hosting the T-20 World Cup in October. India is set to host the World Cup, but there are growing doubts over the tournament going ahead in the country due to the situation of the pandemic. BCCI decided to ask ICC for an extension to make a final decision on the T-20 World Cup.