Keeping in view the unpredictable situation of the COVID-19 pandemic in India, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has finalized the decision of shifting the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup to the UAE. The BCCI confirmed the news on Monday.
“We have officially intimated the ICC that the T20 World Cup can be shifted to the United Arab Emirates. The details are being chalked out,” BCCI president Sourav Ganguly told PTI.
“We will inform ICC today that we are shifting the T20 World Cup to UAE. The dates of the tournament, the ICC needs to decide,” the BCCI Secretary had told ANI.
Earlier this month, the ICC had given the BCCI time till June 28 to inform whether it is in a position to host the 16-team tournament in India. On Saturday, the BCCI informed that due to the COVID-19 crisis in India, the board is likely to move the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup to UAE. Furthermore, they also said that the T20 World Cup 2021 is set to roll out on October 17 in the UAE, with the final for the 16-team tournament scheduled for November 14.
“As far as the T20 World Cup is concerned, today was the deadline as we had to inform ICC about our decision. So today there was a conference call between BCCI President Sourav Ganguly, Secretary Jay Shah, Treasurer Arun Dhumal, me, and the Joint Secretary. We looked at the COVID-19 situation and nobody is sure what is going to happen after two-three months. Looking at everything it has been decided that Secretary Jay Shah and President Ganguly will inform the ICC to move the tournament to UAE,” BCCI Vice-President Rajiv Shukla was quoted as saying.
The COVID-19 situation in India and the tax quandary had put the cricket governing body in a fix. However, the BCCI, having the hosting rights, was bent on conducting the tournament in India. However, after giving much thought to it and considering the pandemic situation in India, the board came to the consensus that it was not feasible to host the Men’s T20 World Cup in India.
“UAE is an ideal venue after India. We all wanted to host it in India, but you know it is an international tournament, that too of big size so it is hard to predict what is going to happen with the COVID situation. After due consideration, now the BCCI has decided to move the T20 World Cup to the UAE,” Shukla added.
The ICC is yet to work out the schedule and fixtures of the T20 World Cup. Meanwhile, the remainder of the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is set to be completed in UAE between September 19-October 15. The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup will get underway just a few days post the completion of the IPL 14 in UAE.