July 15, 2020
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What Will Happen to IPL 2020 amid coronavirus outbreak

What Will Happen to IPL 2020 amid coronavirus outbreak

What was initially regarded as a series of unfortunate and unexplainable event is now known as a
global pandemic. The world has taken a blow since the coronavirus outbreak and all industries are suffering the loss of revenue since everyone has been ordered to remain indoors in lockdown. One of the industries to have felt the pressure is the sporting industry and just before the IPL was set to begin, cricketers were sent back home. In addition to this, IPL betting has resumed and it leads one to ask an obvious question, what will happen to IPL 2020?

Could the IPL take Place ‘Behind Closed Doors’?

It’s no secret that there has been discussion regarding whether or not the IPL should be played in
2020, and if it will be played behind closed doors. BCCI considered hosting and screening the IPL come mid-year in July. Initially, the IPL was set to commence on 29th March but two months later, there has been no sign of the dilution of virus to allow for social interaction. The IPL has been cancelled with no future date given as to when it will commence, which is why discussions have been underway seeking solutions to the problem.

Behind closed doors would entail selecting particular stadiums and only having the teams in the IPL
playing and self-isolating. This would mean that the players in teams would reside in hotels near the
stadium and remain with their teams with little to none interaction other than playing matches. This
will allow IPL betting and matches to proceed and generate revenue which in turn will help the
economy.

What Would Happen If IPL is played with Indians Only

To lessen the number of teams there is an option of creating an IPL with only Indian players. If only Indian players are expected to ply their trade, given they are on their home soil, the biggest question remains to be asked is- will this affect the teams? One of the suggestions for the IPL to be scheduled in 2020 is to make it a less team affair to avoid contracting the virus, making it safer for the players. This would mean that international cricketers wouldn’t be allowed to play, changing the game tremendously.

Former KKR captain, Gautam Gambhir, said that they are happy with playing only Indian players while rumor suggest that Chennai Super Kings have no wish to play without international players.

If teams were to be formed with only Indian players, another draft would have to be made allowing the formation of new squads. This alone could require some time and if the IPL season was to begin in winter, a decision would need to be reached almost immediately.

However, cancelling the event would incur loss in millions and all betting business will be affected adversely. The IPL is the biggest event in cricket and naturally garners international attention and tourism with huge monetary benefits, however, India isn’t in need of the profits, it’s the other countries that would feel the
sting of loss and the board is looking forward to find a way to schedule the IPL in 2020.

A Dire Outcome

The worst possible outcome, and a very possible one, is that the entire IPL 2020 can be cancelled and
rescheduled to proceed as per normal in 2021. This would be devastating for supporters as well as the franchise. After discussion with the BCCI, many are hoping a plan is being set in place to save the IPL and avoid the league being scrapped this year. Another discussed solution was to have back to back games to shorten the leagues and to complete the season quickly. But then a suggestion to extend the league could also work.


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