Confirmed: Remaining IPL matches to be played in UAE
The IPL will resume in September in the UAE, while the BCCI has requested more time for a final decision on where to host the T20 World Cup
29 May 2021, 07:16 PM AEST
The Indian Premier League is set to resume in the United Arab Emirates during September and October, tournament organisers announced on Saturday.
The IPL was postponed in early May after a number of players tested positive for COVID-19, and there are 31 matches in the season still to be played.
"The Board of Control for Cricket in India on Saturday announced to complete the remaining matches of VIVO Indian Premier League 2021 season in the United Arab Emirates considering the monsoon season in India in the months of September-October this year," read a statement from the BCCI.
Media reports this week suggested that the lucrative competition will cram 10 double-header matches into a three-week window starting in the third week of September before culminating in early October.
It would mean no clash with India's tour of England, with the final Test match scheduled to finish on September 14, around four days before the reported restart.
An October finish would run directly into the window for the T20 World Cup, which could yet also be played in the UAE.
In the statement sent on Saturday, the BCCI also added an extension would be sought from the International Cricket Council "to take an appropriate call on the hosting of ICC T20 World Cup 2021".
Nearly 40 Australian cricketers, support staff and broadcasters are still in hotel quarantine in Sydney after they arrived home on a charter flight provided by the Indian authorities.
The Australians had been required to isolate in the Maldives for about a week when Australia shut its borders to arrivals from India.
They are expected to clear their quarantine period this weekend, with a preliminary squad of 23 players named for an ODI and T20 tour of the West Indies that will depart in late June.
Allrounder Daniel Sams has already made himself unavailable for that tour and Cricket Australia is understood to have long been in discussions with players about the mental fatigue of biosecure bubbles and hotel quarantine periods.
Pat Cummins and David Warner have reportedly expressed a desire to remain with their families instead of travelling to the Caribbean – Cummins' fiancée Becky is pregnant with the couple's first child, and Warner has three young daughters – and others may follow suit.
A proposed trip to Bangladesh for more T20s after the West Indies series has yet to be formally agreed, although Bangladesh Cricket Board operations chairman Akram Khan said this week the teams would play five matches across nine days in August.
With international series against West Indies and Bangladesh looming as well as the T20 World Cup before a jam-packed home summer of international cricket with a Test against Afghanistan before the five-Test Vodafone Ashes series, managing the mental health of players will be as important a priority as their physical wellbeing for CA.
It remains to be seen if Australia will release players for a rescheduled IPL given the close proximity to the T20 World Cup, although CA may see the tournament as ideal preparation for some players ahead of the showpiece tournament.
Key T20 players such as captain Aaron Finch and fast bowler Mitchell Starc do not have currently have IPL contracts, although with the England authorities having already confirmed their players would be barred from participating if a rescheduled tournament clashed with international commitments, opportunities may arise.
There were also mooted plans for a T20 tri-series with Afghanistan and the West Indies in the lead-up to the T20 World Cup, but with the tournament likely to be moved they remain in doubt.
- with PA