IPL 2019: BCCI still unsure on when and where the tournament will be hosted

There is also a question on who will make the final decision.

Chennai Super Kings IPL
IPL 2018 champions Chennai Super Kings. (Photo by Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

The IPL 2019 auction is scheduled to be held in Jaipur this year on December 16. The BCCI also released a list of 1003 players who have registered to be a part of the auction. While the venue for the auction was changed from Bangalore where it was held last time to Jaipur there’s another question that remains unanswered. Where will the 12th season of the tournament be hosted?

Neither the BCCI officials, the CEO, nor the CoA has an answer to it yet. With the World Cup scheduled to start on May 30, and the general elections in India just around that time, the IPL is expected to start somewhere in mid-March. The board also has to make sure the tournament is wrapped up with a window before the World Cup starts in England. That will ensure most international players are available for a major part of the tournament.

BCCI also has a dilemma on whether they will be able to host the IPL at home and if at all what part of it. That depends on the schedule of general elections in.

South Africa or UAE

Earlier they had to move out the 2009 and 2014 editions when there was a clash with the elections. It was hosted in South Africa and UAE then. Based on the previous experience it is likely that they will prefer one of these two venues. They’ve done a recce of both the possible hosts and have a green signal from Cricket South Africa as well as Emirates Cricket Board. However, this time around there is uncertainty on who will call the shots. There is no Governing Council and it is only the CoA that is in a position to make the decisions.

TOI reported that Star India, the official broadcaster having spent a massive sum of more than INR 16000 crore to gain the rights isn’t keen on the IPL being hosted outside of India. “They have a lot at stake and it is only fair that they will want the IPL to be played in India, to maximize their revenue streams,” say industry sources.

There is really little that they can control since it is the government that will decide most things concerning the scenario where the general elections clash with the IPL. “It is the central government’s call to take and there’s no written word yet. Unofficially, and it’s only hearsay still, the government will want the IPL to stay in India,” TOI quoted those connected with the BCCI.

Franchises aren’t quite happy with the turn of events and criticized the board for failing to manage things well.

“Year after year, this is how BCCI manages things. It expects top dollar from the rights they sell but have no idea how to conduct their affairs,” franchise officials were quoted as saying.

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