For the first time, BCCI has made an internal communication to its affiliated state units that plans are afoot to stage the suspended edition of Indian Premier League (IPL), this year.
After the International cricket council (ICC) decided to buy more time to take a call on the T20 World Cup scheduled for October-November this year in its meeting on Wednesday, the BCCI has made its own move. For the first time, BCCI has made an internal communication to its affiliated state units that plans are afoot to stage the suspended edition of Indian Premier League (IPL), this year.
"The BCCI is working on all possible options to ensure that we are able to stage the IPL this year, even if it means playing the tournament in empty stadiums," president Ganguly wrote in a letter.
"The fans, franchisees, players, broadcasters, sponsors and all other stakeholders are keenly looking forward to the possibility of IPL being hosted this year," he added.
Although no particular time period has been given, it's understood that BCCI can only stage the IPL in India after monsoon. That would mean, not before the end of September. It leaves the BCCI to use its good offices and clout, to create a window for the T20 league. Although hosting multi-nation events appear a logistical nightmare in the Covid-19 affected world, the Asian Cricket Council is yet to postpone the Asia Cup, scheduled in September.
To illustrate the point of what the IPL means to all stakeholders, Ganguly wrote: "Recently a lot of players, both from India and other countries, participating in IPL have also shown their keenness on being a part of this year IPL. We are optimistic and the BCCI will shortly decide on the future course of action on this."
BCCI stands to suffer a revenue loss of around Rs4000 crores if the IPL is not held this year.
It has also been communicated to the state units that SOPs for resumption of training and cricket activities will soon be sent. "The BCCI is in the process of developing a Covid-19 Standard Operation Procedures (SOP) for all state cricket associations. Essentially this SOP is being made with a view of providing our Members with a standard set of guidelines which will help the associations to resume cricket in their respective areas. The BCCI has engaged medical specialists for the drafting of this SOP. I would like to assure all our members that the office bearers at BCCI are continuously monitoring the pandemic situation and all efforts are being made to ensure that cricket resumes soon."