Amid coronavirus outbreak, IPL may be indefinitely deferred: Reports

The decision comes in the wake the number of the coronavirus cases rising to 415 in the country and claiming eight lives to date

IPL, Indian Premier League, coronavirus, COVID-19, BCCI
The glitzy T20 tournament is scheduled to start from March 29 in Mumbai with a match between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings. Photo: @ipl/Twitter

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Monday (March 23) indefinitely deferred a review meeting to be held for final decision making on whether the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) will be staged or not.

The decision comes in the wake the number of the coronavirus cases rising to 415 in the country and claiming eight lives to date.

Following the postponement of the glitzy tournament to April 15, the BCCI office-bearers, on March 14, held a meeting with the franchise owners to explore options regarding the T20 event.

Related news: IPL to be truncated if it happens: BCCI President Sourav Ganguly

BCCI president Sourav Ganguly said if the tournament happens it’ll be a “curtailed” one as that’s the only viable alternative. However, the review meeting for discussing the same was indefinitely deferred on Monday.

“No meeting is scheduled as there’s not much to discuss about IPL at this critical juncture of the coronavirus pandemic,” IPL governing council chairman Brijesh Patel told Sportstar .

According to a report in Sportstar, the franchise owners may involve in a conference-call on Tuesday (March 24) and as per a franchise executive “IPL is the last thing on everyone’s mind” amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

With most parts of the country being under lockdown until March 31, the BCCI does not have many options left to stage the event, other than extending the scheduled May 24 finale to May 31. However, according to franchise sources any possibility for the tournament to happen this is highly unlikely and the call on calling the season off is unlikely to be taken any time before April second week, as reported by Sportstar.

Related news: COVID-19 effect: BCCI suspends Indian Premier League till April 15

Despite BCCI hoping against hope for staging IPL in some form or shape before the window that can be stretched to May 31 as against the earlier scheduled final on May 24, BCCI and franchise souces indicated that the possibility of the tournament getting off to a start this year is as good as over. But the call on calling the season off is unlikely to be taken any time before April second week.

Meanwhile, the chances of overseas players coming to India to participate in the tournament also looks bleak as the country earlier announced the suspension of all visas until April 15.

As a result, it would be extremely difficult for overseas cricketers to get the clearance to travel out of their respective country in the next two months.

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