IPL 2021 is set to return soon. While the final schedule is yet to be announced, news has started doing rounds on the internet that the big fat Indian cricket festival will take place in September-October, later this year. The mega tournament, which was temporarily suspended on 4 May after several cricketers tested positive for COVID-19, will be held in the United Arab Emirates. The latest developments suggest the league could commence on 18 or 19 September and conclude on 9 or 10 October.
The remainder of the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League will be held in the UAE. It will be for the third time that the grand cricket tournament will be played in the UAE. IPL was previously held in the Middle Eastern country in 2014 and 2020. While only the first 20 games of the 2014 edition were held in the UAE, the entire 2020 season had to be moved to the Emirates due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All of the Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Sharjah venues hosted the tournament last year as Mumbai Indians lifted their fifth IPL title. For 2021, though, it remains to be seen if the BCCI will make the teams travel amid the never-ending COVID-19 crisis.
As many as 31 games, including two qualifiers, one eliminator, and the final, are left to be held. Reports say the UAE leg will include ten double-headers and seven evening matches. India’s Test series against England is scheduled to end on 14 September. The BCCI is said to flow the entire team to the UAE in a chartered flight for a ‘bubble to bubble’ transfer, a senior BCCI official reported. Players participating in the Caribbean Premier League will also travel to the UAE in a similar fashion. Cricketers travelling from the UK and the Caribbean will have to undergo a three-day quarantine upon landing in Dubai.
BCCI had to, eventually, suspend the 14th edition of the tournament after several cricketers and staff tested positive for COVID-19. The IPL governing council, on 4 May, said in a statement that it had “unanimously decided to postpone IPL 2021 season, with immediate effect’. Keep reading AlShorts for all the updates from in and around the cricketing space in just 60 words.