Sourav Ganguly, president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said that the remainder of the 2021 Indian T20 League 2021 cannot be held in India due to several ‘organisational hazards’ such as quarantine requirements.
A rise in Covid cases in the country resulted in the 2021 season being postponed after 29 games. Ganguly though ruled out squeezing the rest of the Indian T20 League in England during the six-week gap between the World Test Championship final in June against New Zealand and India’s Test series against England in August.
“India is supposed to go to Sri Lanka (in July) for three ODIs and five T20Is. There are lots of organisational hazards like 14-day quarantine,” Ganguly told Sportstar. “It can’t happen in India. This quarantine is tough to handle. Too early to say how we can find a slot to complete the Indian T20 League.”
The MCC (Lord’s), Surrey (The Oval), Warwickshire (Edgbaston, Birmingham) and Lancashire (Old Trafford, Manchester) have offered to host the remaining 31 Indian T20 League matches, while the United Arab Emirates where the 2020 season was held and Sri Lanka have also been discussed as possible back-up venues.
When asked whether the plug should have been pulled on the Indian T20 League earlier, Ganguly insisted: “You can say that now in hindsight that the Indian T20 League should have been called off earlier. Mumbai and Chennai (legs) did not have cases. Only when the Indian T20 League reached Delhi and Ahmedabad did the cases rise. People will say a lot of things in any case.
“The English Premier League had so many people affected. But they could reschedule the matches. But you can’t do that with the Indian T20 League. You stop it for seven days and it is done. Players go back home and then the process of quarantine starts from scratch.
“There are different scenarios, and it is not always helpful to be wise after the event. We don’t have the advantage. As I said, we would have continued if there were no cases. We would have completed the Indian T20 League. The players were in the bubble and there were no crowds at the venues. Players were not getting infected. Once the players got affected, we called it off. Look at leagues going around the world. They have had Covid cases, but they have continued.”