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BCCI to retain T20 World Cup rights, even if it moves to the UAE

“It’s too early to say what will happen. But the contingency plan is that it would go to UAE with the hosting rights staying with BCCI,” Dhiraj Malhotra, GM, BCCI and the tournament director of the World Cup said.

The T20 World Cup scheduled in India between October 18-November 15 could move to the United Arab Emirates if the Covid-19 situation in the country does not improve. Although the Indian cricket board, BCCI, hasn’t given up hopes of hosting it, taking the Cup to the UAE is the contingency plan, and not a swap with Australia, who will host the 2022 T20 World Cup.

“It’s too early to say what will happen. But the contingency plan is that it would go to UAE with the hosting rights staying with BCCI,” Dhiraj Malhotra, GM, BCCI, and the tournament director of the World Cup said.

Before the latest surge in coronavirus infections in the country, BCCI had shortlisted Mumbai, New Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Dharamsala, Ahmedabad, and Lucknow as the nine host venues. But the severity of the second wave of infections—3,645 deaths were reported in the 24 hours until Thursday evening—has caused huge concern with India’s health infrastructure coming under a lot of strain.

The Indian board has no option but to wait for the health situation to improve and travel bans imposed by several countries to be lifted before they can hope to stage the world event. It is understood that does happen, keeping the World Cup in India without crowds would be the preferred option before they decide on the contingency plan.

The T20 World Cup this year will be a 16-team affair with teams to announce their squads one month before the competition. There are four grounds in the UAE where international matches can be hosted, and should the need arise that option will be activated. The eight-team IPL was successfully staged in the UAE last year.

 

 

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