The most awaited cricket tournament of the year, ICC T20 World Cup is likely to be shifted to Dubai as Coronavirus cases in India continue to surge.
“Due to the COVID situation in the country, we may shift the T20 World Cup scheduled in India to UAE. We are monitoring the situation closely. Health and safety of players are paramount for us. We will take the final call soon”: BCCI Secretary, Jay Shah to ANI
There are media reports suggesting that the 2021 men’s T20 World Cup is set to start from October 17 in the UAE, with the final for the 16-team tournament scheduled for November 14. The BCCI can make an official announcement about this on June 28th.
According to reports, 13 matches will be played between eight teams in Round One. Four of these teams will get a place in the second round. The second round can start from October 24. However, the matches of Round 2 will be played in the UAE which will be in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Sharjah.
On June 1, the ICC granted BCCI until the end of June to give its final word on whether India will be able to host the T20 World Cup. With the Covid-19 pandemic disrupting the global cricket calendar last year, the ICC postponed the 2020 World Cup, originally scheduled to be held in Australia, and decided India would host the tournament in 2021 with Australia hosting the 2022 edition.
Though the numbers have come down and India is witnessing a downward trend, health experts have predicted a third wave in India in September-October. BCCI would not like to take any chance as it is still bearing the losses after abruptly suspending the IPL at the halfway stage in May due to the brutal second wave.