After the rapid rise in the number of cases of COVID-19 in four teams, the Board of Cricket Control India (BCCI) decided to indefinitely suspend IPL 2021. However, the BCCI is looking for a window to resume the season, possibly after they host the T20 World Cup in October. Various options are being explored by the BCCI, the front-runner for the contingency is the United Arab Emirates.
According to ESPNcricinfo, a group of English counties has offered to host the remainder of the IPL 2021 season in September this year. The MCC, Surrey, Warwickshire, and Lancashire, who are based at Lord’s, The Kia Oval (both London), Edgbaston (Birmingham) and Emirates Old Trafford (Manchester), respectively are part of the group which wrote to the ECB inviting them to extend the opportunity to the BCCI. If the BBCI accepts the offer the tournament could be completed in around two weeks in the second half of September.
The subject is likely to come up at a virtual International Cricket Council (ICC) meeting of the national chief executives which is scheduled for Thursday. The counties have also pointed out that it would help top players to play high-quality cricket in the tough English conditions heading into the T20 World Cup. India was supposed to host T-20 World Cup in October. However, it is looking uncertain that the tournament will be going ahead as planned. BCCI has reportedly kept UAE as the back up option for the World Cup.
There are many complications to resume IPL 2021 and one of the biggest challenges is the existing schedule. The England-India Test series ends in Manchester on September 14. After this test series, England is expected in Pakistan for T20Is less than a month later, but the last two weeks of September are less busy than the others. Previously, reports have suggested that Australia and UAE are other options that could host the remaining games of IPL 2021.