The ongoing Indian Premier League 2021 has been marred by breaches in the bio-bubble for the franchise, while some of the participating members have recently tested COVID positive. Meanwhile, the tournament has been postponed for now.
In what comes as more shocking news related to the Indian Premier League 2021, the tournament has been postponed, starting Tuesday, after multiple bubble breaches. Since Monday, there have been reports of numerous cases of participating members testing COVID positive.
Sources confirmed the same to Asianet Newsable. Meanwhile, vice-president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, Rajeev Shukla, told ANI, "IPL suspended for this season." Furthermore, IPL chairman Brijesh Patel told PTI, "Indian Premier League suspended indefinitely after multiple COVID-19 cases in its bio-bubble."
The update comes after a couple of more players have tested COVID positive. Sunrisers Hyderabad wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha is the latest to join the list, along with Delhi Capitals spinner Amit Mishra. "He (Saha) had fever and had been in isolation for the past five days. We are also being asked to stay in the room," the source was quoted as saying to PTI.
"The Indian Premier League Governing Council (IPL GC) and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in an emergency meeting has unanimously decided to postpone IPL 2021 season, with immediate effect. The BCCI does not want to compromise on the safety of the players, support staff and the other participants involved in organising the IPL. This decision was taken keeping the safety, health and wellbeing of all the stakeholders in mind," said IPL in a statement later.
"These are difficult times, especially in India and while we have tried to bring in some positivity and cheer, however, it is imperative that the tournament is now suspended and everyone goes back to their families and loved ones in these trying times. The BCCI will do everything in its powers to arrange for the secure and safe passage of all the participants in IPL 2021. The BCCI would like to thank all the healthcare workers, state associations, players, support staff, franchises, sponsors, partners and all the service providers who have tried their best to organise IPL 2021 even in these extremely difficult times," it added.
Earlier, on Monday, a couple of players from Kolkata Knight Riders (Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier) had tested positive. Consequently, KKR's Monday clash against Royal Challengers Bangalore was called off.
It was followed by a couple of non-playing members from Chennai Super Kings: Laxmipathi Balaji (bowling coach) and a bus cleaner. Also, a couple of ground staff from Delhi had tested positive.
Although Tuesday's game between Sunrisers Hyderabad and Mumbai Indians was scheduled to go ahead, there were apprehensions since MI last played against CSK. Meanwhile, CSK's game on Wednesday against Rajasthan Royals was set to be postponed as the entire CSK contingent had already entered week-long isolation. DC too had entered into quarantine after playing its last game against KKR, as none of the sides took to training on Monday.
Speaking on the same, BCCI secretary Jay Shah told ANI, "The BCCI and the IPL GC have unanimously decided to postpone the 2021 season till further notice. We don't wish to compromise the safety for the players, the people involved, the employees, the groundsmen, the match officials, every single person involved."
As of now, it is unclear when would the tournament resume. If it is to resume within a couple of weeks, it would be interesting to see how the fixtures are planned, given the fact that India is scheduled to take part in the ICC World Test Championship final, in June, against New Zealand, in Southampton.
It can't be asserted if the International Cricket Council would be willing to push the date of the WTC final back. In that case, BCCI might be forced to reschedule the remainder of IPL 2021 later, somewhere in September, before the ICC World T20, scheduled to be held in India in October. Also, the United Arab Emirates is considered a backup option for both.
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Last Updated May 4, 2021, 4:47 PM IST