Reports: SLC requests BCCI to start upcoming tour with T20Is instead of Tests

Reports: SLC requests BCCI to start upcoming tour with T20Is instead of Tests

Sri Lanka is set to tour India for two Tests and three T20Is in February-March.

Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka. (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) is learnt to have requested the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to tweak the itinerary of the upcoming tour comprising two Tests and three T20Is.

The series is set to start with the first Test at Bengaluru’s M Chinnaswamy Stadium from February 25 followed by the second Test at Mohali’s IS Bindra Stadium from March 5 before the three T20Is on March 13, 15 and 18 in Mohali, Dharmsala and Lucknow.

SLC, however, has requested the BCCI to consider starting the series with the shorter format followed by the two Tests, as that will help them in managing the players’ bubble-to-bubble transfer from Australia, against whom the team will play five T20Is until February 20.

“SLC has requested BCCI to play the T20I series first instead of the Test matches. The Sri Lankan team will be playing a T20I series against Australia before coming to India. It will be convenient for them to send a team which will be already in a bubble,” a BCCI official was quoted as saying by the Times of India.

Sri Lanka series likely to be confined to limited venues

It is further possible that the BCCI will reduce the venues and instead conduct the series with minimal travelling for the players in a bid to avoid any Covid-19 related disruption as India is currently experiencing a third wave of the pandemic.

The board recently decided to limit the West Indies series to two venues – Ahmedabad and Kolkata – from the originally planned six to ensure logistical ease in such challenging times. As it stands, the ODI leg of the West Indies series will be hosted by Ahmedabad before the T20Is in Kolkata.

“BCCI wants to distribute international games to as many state associations. But the Covid-19 wave has made it difficult to do so. Confining a series to a certain region is convenient,” the official pointed out.

The board, meanwhile, is still looking into possibilities of resuming India’s domestic tournaments, including the Ranji Trophy, which was postponed last month in the wake of the Covid-19 upsurge in the nation.

“It will take a month to finish the league stage but the number of Covid-19 cases have to fall drastically. Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata seem to have gone past their peak. We will monitor the situation for another 10-14 days,” the BCCI official said.