IPL 2019: Fixture likely to come out after Lok Sabha election schedule
This is not the first time that the IPL has had to adjust with the general elections.
Updated - Feb 13, 2019 1:41 am
Cricket came second to politics as the schedule of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 is reportedly coming out only after the general elections-schedule is out. The annual T20 cricket carnival is set to be brought ahead this year because of the ICC World Cup starting in May but the schedule of the general election has created a problem for the BCCI in fixing an early fixture as well.
The tenure of the current Lok Sabha ends by May end and the election has to be staged before that. The World Cup, on the other hand, begins on May 30 and will continue till July 14. This is not the first time, however, that the IPL has had to adjust with the general elections.
In 2009, the entire IPL was shifted to South Africa while in 2014, it was partially staged in the UAE and the business end was held in India. In 2011, the IPL preceded the World Cup while in 2015, it followed the mega event. However, this is for the first time that the IPL, general election and the World Cup have fallen in the same year.
The first time that IPL, general election and WC happening in same year
According to a report in the Hindustan Times, the entire fixture of IPL 12 might only be released in March, once the Election Commission of India announces the election schedule. The only confirmation that has been received about the IPL so far is that it will begin on March 23 and staged in India.
Since the Lodha Committee recommends a minimum of a 15-day gap between the IPL and India’s international assignments, the tournament can’t be postponed too much since India are scheduled to play their first game in the World Cup against South Africa in Southampton on June 5. Already, the match has been postponed by three days from June 2 to June 5 because of the Lodha panel’s recommendations.
“The schedule will take some time as we need to wait for the general election dates to be released by the election commission. Since this is the most important event in the calendar year, one has to ensure that we work according to the dates and plan the games in a way that everything is in sync. We all know the kind of arrangement that goes behind hosting elections and that is the priority,” a BCCI official was quoted as saying.
Besides the general election, severe droughts in Maharashtra and adjoining states have also been a headache for the IPL organisers.