In 2020, the Board of Control for Cricket In India (BCCI) successfully hosted the franchise-based league Indian Premier League (IPL) in the United Arab Emirates. While in 2021, the board decided to bring the league back to its homeland. When BCCI had planned to host the IPL in India, the situation in India was better. But just a few weeks before the commencement of the league, the pandemic started its destruction.
The IPL Governing Council had suggested the BCCI shift the league to the UAE again. While some BCCI officials were in favour of the suggestion, but some shot the advice down. The Emirates Cricket Board was also ready to host the IPL on short notice.
BCCI Turned Down IPL GC’s Advice To Host IPL 2021 In UAE
“UAE was always the first choice of the IPL GC for this year’s tournament. Even a week before the start of IPL, they asked BCCI to move the entire event to the UAE. Emirates Cricket Board was also put on immediate alert and they were willing to conduct IPL again even if BCCI decided to shift the tournament on such short notice.
“But nobody in the BCCI showed the urgency to take the step. The officials kept waiting for each other to make the first move and eventually the proposal was shot down,” a source told TOI.
Earlier this year, the BCXCI had successfully concluded the domestic T20 tournament Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and India’s all-format bilateral series against England. However, the situation was under control in February and March. But it spiked up in the first week of April.
“The Board got an enormous confidence boost after conducting the Test, T20I and ODI series against England at three venues smoothly. The IPL, though, was a far bigger challenge with more teams, personnel and venues at play; but the BCCI felt that it had the infrastructure to pull it off. However, they couldn’t anticipate that the situation would worsen so much in the next 20-odd days from the start of IPL,” the BCCI source told.
“It is extremely unfortunate and the BCCI is taking extreme precautions now so that things don’t get aggravated hereon.”
The source also told the TOI that some franchises were also in favour of hosting the league in the UAE.
“In hindsight, it should have been the right thing to do. The biggest flaw in this year’s IPL is the travel arrangements. In the UAE, we were travelling to and fro our bases and were cooped up in the same hotel. There was a routine. Here, we are changing cities, we don’t know whether the pilots and flight attendants have quarantined or not, the food quality on flights, etc. The caravan idea just doesn’t work,” the source concluded.