The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) copped a lot of criticisms for its decision to host IPL 2021 amidst a raging pandemic in the country. However, BCCI President Sourav Ganguly has backed their decision to stage the tournament in India and not in the UAE, unlike last year.
India is currently going through a severe crisis with over 3lakh news COVID19 cases across the country and the death toll rising with each passing day. However, the situation was completely opposite earlier this year in February. The country had curbed the number of cases that prompted BCCI to organise IPL 2021 in India.
Staging IPL 2021 in India was not a mistake – Sourav Ganguly
Moreover, having successfully hosted the all-format bilateral series against England, the board received a huge boost in confidence. On top of that, little did they know of the second wave of the pandemic that was to come. Meanwhile, in an interview with Indian Express, Sourav Ganguly maintained that organising the tournament in the country wasn’t a mistake considering how low the virus caseload was in the country when the plans were being finalised. The BCCI President also reiterated that the same reason prompted them to host IPL 2021 in India and not in the UAE.
“No. When we decided, the number was not even close to this. We did the England tour successfully,” Ganguly answered. It was discussed, but the (COVID-19 cases) in India in February was (virtually) nothing. It has just gone through the roof in the last three weeks. Before that it was nothing. We discussed about the UAE but then decided to do it in India,” he added.
Meanwhile, BCCI had to call off the tournament for the time being in the wake of a couple of COVID19 positive cases among the players and support staffs and a potential bio-bubble breach. When asked if organising the 14th edition of the league in one or two cities would’ve been better, Sourav Ganguly responded with a sharp retort.
“As I said, when we decided all this, there was no (Covid spike) in India. So it’s very easy to say now, but when this tournament was organised, Covid numbers (in India) were nothing. We started with Mumbai and finished there without any case. And Mumbai was very high (number of active Covid cases) then,” said the former India captain.