The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has laid out stringent rules and sanctions for those violating Covid-19 pandemic safety protocols in a quest to conduct a seamless and risk-free Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022.
Protocol violations by players and team officials during the IPL 2022 will result in severe penalties ranging from a one-match ban to a seven-day re-quarantine to exclusion from the competition. A violation of the bubble by a family member of a player or match official will result in even harsher penalties.
Moreover, in case a team willfully permits an outsider into the team bubble, it may face a fine of up to Rs 1 million for the first violation, and consecutive lapses may result in a reduction of one or two points from the team’s score.
First offence – 7-day re-quarantine or such other period as may be provided in the Health & Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 (without pay for the number of matches missed)
Second offence – One match suspension (without pay) to take effect after the completion of the 7-day re-quarantine or such period re-quarantine as may be provided in the Health & Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 (without pay)
Third offence – Removal from the Registered Squad for the rest of the season – no replacement allowed.
For a family member:
First offence –7-day re-quarantine for the family member or such other period re-quarantine as may be provided in the Health & Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 and 7-day re-quarantine for the relevant Player, Team Official or Match Official or such other period re-quarantine as may be provided in the Health & Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 (without pay for the number of matches missed)
Second offence –permanent removal of the friend or family member from the bubble for the rest of the season and 7-day re-quarantine for the concerned Player, Team Official or Match Official or such other period re-quarantine as may be provided in the Health & Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 (without pay for the number of matches missed).
Other sanctions are as stated:
Breach: If a franchise is unable to field a team for any match due to having less than 12 Players available – 11 in the playing XI (of which at least 7 must be Indian) plus 1 substitute fielder
Sanction: BCCI, at its discretion, will attempt to reschedule the match for later in the season. If this is not possible, the issue will be referred to the IPL Technical Committee. The decision of the IPL Technical Committee will be final and binding.
Breach: Wilfully allowing any person into the Bio-Secure Bubble to have contact with the Players &/or Support Staff without that person going through the 7-day quarantine or such period as provided in the Health & Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 and negative test protocols as provided in the Health and Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 or failing to put in place adequate procedures to control unauthorised access to the Bio-Secure Bubble.
First offence – a fine payable by the Franchisee to BCCI of INR 1,00,00,000 (Rupees One Crore Only) Second offence – deduction of 1 point Third and subsequent offences – each a deduction of 2 points.
Breach: Unauthorised departure from the Bio-Secure Bubble of a Player, or a family member of the same, resulting in a need for the Player to re-quarantine for 7 days or such period as provided in the Health & Safety Protocols during IPL 2022.
Sanctions: A fine payable by the Franchisee to BCCI of the pro-rata League Fee that would have been paid to the Player if he had been available for the match(es) during the re-quarantine period.
Breach: Other breaches of the Health and Safety Protocols during IPL 2022 (e.g. non-provision of the “must-have” facilities in the hotels, training facilities & ground transportation).
Sanctions: BCCI will work with the franchisee to effect compliance. If there are further persistent breaches, the BCCI will make a Complaint to be heard under section 6 of these Operational Rules.
Sanctions are also imposed on persons who fail the Covid tests. The first offence will result in a warning, while further offences will result in a Rs 75,000 fine per offence. Offenders in this group will also be barred from entering a stadium or training facility until the missing test is completed.
The Health & Safety Protocols section of the Operational Rules ends with a couple of advisory notes: “Franchises and other entities responsible for the individual Bio-Secure Bubbles may impose their own code of conduct to deal with breaches by members of their bubble for protocols such as hand washing /sanitization and respiratory etiquettes. Persons Subject To These Operational Rules should also be aware of the applicable laws in India regarding the wearing of masks and social distancing and the imposition of fines, if any.”