Reports suggest the BCCI will ask for a month’s extension to take a final decision on hosting the upcoming ICC World T20 in India during the ICC board meeting slated to take place on Tuesday (June 1). The ravaging COVID-19 pandemic in the country has raised doubts about India’s ability to conduct the tournament in a safe and secure manner.
According to an Indian Express report, BCCI head Sourav Ganguly was slated to attend the meeting in person. However, the latest developments suggest he will be present virtually and will only leave for the UAE on Wednesday to discuss the IPL 2021 restart with the Emirates Cricket Board.
It also added that it is unlikely a final decision would be made in the meeting and that another BCCI-SGM meeting could be in the works after July 1. The ICC will probably make a formal announcement during the July 18 annual conference.
With the IPL now being moved to the UAE during a one-month window, starting September 15, the BCCI is keen to host the ICC T20 World Cup, although the UAE is supposedly ‘Plan B’.
BCCI source: “Ganguly and Jay Shah right in asking for one month to decide”
A senior BCCI official noted the reduction in COVID-19 cases in India over the last week, but added that the cricket board is not in a situation to “firmly commit” to hosting the WT20.
“Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah are right in asking for one month’s time to decide,” a senior BCCI source privy to the developments told PTI on condition of anonymity.
“Obviously, they will also get feedback from the government on whether it would be prudent to host it in India,” he added.
The report also claimed there was no chance of nine cities being allotted venues. The source stated the possibility of cases spiking again despite stringent lockdowns being imposed would require limited venues to be used.
“If the BCCI manages to host the tournament in October-November which is currently a 50-50 probability, it could well mean single city three venues in Mumbai along with Pune and Ahmedabad as venues for the final. This curtails travel. But the Pakistan team playing in Maharashtra and Gujarat also needs to be factored in,” the source said.
The meeting will also discuss the Futures Tours & Programme (FTP) Cycle for the next eight years between 2023 to 2031.