IPL | Cricket

Indian Premier League likely to begin on March 27

Photo used for representation purpose only.

Photo used for representation purpose only.

The 15th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is tentatively scheduled to begin on March 27. While the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is trying its best for the tournament to be organised in India, it has identified United Arab Emirates (UAE) and South Africa as back-up venues.

The Hindu understands that these aspects were informed to the representatives of all 10 franchises during a conference call on Saturday, soon after the BCCI officially announced the pre-auction signings of the Lucknow and Ahmedabad franchises.

“I am delighted to confirm that the 15th season of the IPL will start in the last week of March and will run until May end,” BCCI secretary Jay Shah said in a statement.

The BCCI had earlier been eyeing April 2 as the start date for the IPL. “Since all the stakeholders have proposed lesser day games, the tournament may be advanced to March 27,” revealed an IPL insider, citing anonymity.

Due to the third wave resulting in a nationwide surge, the BCCI will try and host the IPL in the Mumbai-Pune corridor. However, if it doesn’t work out, the IPL may be relocated to either UAE or South Africa.

Shah, however, stressed BCCI will try its best to stage the IPL in India and will confirm the venue before the next month’s Player Auction.

“A majority of the team owners expressed their wish that the tournament be held in India. The BCCI was always keen on staging the 2022 edition that will see two new teams – Ahmedabad and Lucknow – in India. I can tell you that we will leave no stone unturned in ensuring that IPL stays in India,” Shah said.

“The BCCI has not compromised on the health and safety of its stakeholders in the past and will concurrently work on Plan B since the COVID-19 situation with new variants remains fluid. The mega IPL Auction will take place on February 12-13th and we will lock in venues before that.”

It is understood that BCCI specified UAE as Plan B. However, some of the franchises have requested for a relook at it considering “the due factor making games lop-sided” during the last two years when the IPL was moved to the Emirates.

The BCCI had also held preliminary discussions with Sri Lanka Cricket as a possible option but it has been put off due to usually inclement weather in Colombo in May.


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Printable version | May 23, 2022 1:06:21 am | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/ipl-likely-to-begin-on-march-27/article38309245.ece