IPL 2021: 50% crowd possible for UAE leg; tournament likely to be played from September 19 to October 10

IPL 2021: 50% crowd possible for UAE leg; tournament likely to be played from September 19 to October 10

BCCI top brass including President Sourav Ganguly landed in Dubai on Monday.

Jay Shah and Sourav Ganguly
Jay Shah and Sourav Ganguly. (Photo Source: Twitter)

In a major development around the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), the tournament is likely to be played from September 19 to October 10. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had confirmed a couple of days ago, after its Special General Meeting (SGM), that the remaining 31 matches of the IPL will be played in the UAE.

Moreover, it has also been understood that allowing crowds isn’t a major concern for the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) and the BCCI unless for an intervention from the local government. The UAE government policy is to allow the fans for the sporting events with a condition that they’re vaccinated.

“The vaccinated fans can be allowed up to 50 per cent of the [stadium] capacity,” a UAE board official said according to Cricbuzz. Meanwhile, the top brass of the BCCI has left for Dubai to finalise the required arrangements with the UAE government and the ECB.

ECB confident of pulling off 31 matches of IPL 2021

The BCCI President Sourav Ganguly, secretary Jay Shah, treasurer Arun Singh Dhumal, vice-president Rajeev Shukla and joint secretary Jayesh George have reportedly landed in Dubai on Monday. With the travel restrictions due to the pandemic, the ECB officials had to obtain special permission for the landing of the BCCI delegation. The purpose of the visit seems to be finalising logistical and operational requirements.

There could be discussions over the concessional price of hotels who are said to have been quoting a huge amount. The ECB officials are confident of pulling off the 31 matches of IPL 2021 given their experience of hosting a full tournament comprising 60 matches last year. Moreover, they’ve also got close to 100 days to prepare for the competition.

Having said that, the ECB is understood to have been worried about hosting the ICC T20 World Cup. Currently, India are the hosts, but UAE has been kept as a back-up venue due to the upsurge in COVID cases. A lot of cricket is set to be played in the UAE starting from June with PSL set to resume in Abu Dhabi (20 matches as of now).