The remainder of the recently-suspended Indian Premier League (IPL) comprising 31 matches including four knockout games is set to be played in the UAE during the September-October window.
Though there has been no official announcement, the Indian board is likely to take a call over the lucrative T20 league's future on May 29, according to a report by The Times of India. The BCCI has called for a Special General Meeting (SGM) on May 29.
The fourteenth edition of the IPL was suspended on 4 May amid an outbreak of Covid-19 among the franchises. The T20 World Cup currently remains in line to be hosted in India.
However, with only four teams being involved in the IPL 2021 playoffs, players from the other four teams can join their respective franchises for the World Cup.
“If that gap can be reduced to four, it will allow BCCI five extra days to make use of. If we can have those extra days eked out from the India-England schedule, then it adds to the window. If not, then within these 30 days, a full day will have to be set aside for the Indian team and English cricketers to travel from the UK to the UAE, five days will have to be set aside for the knockouts later,” a source was quoted saying by the TOI.
“That will leave the BCCI with 24 days to conclude 27 matches. This window has four weekends available, which means a total of eight Saturdays and Sundays for doubleheaders that can accommodate 16 matches. That will leave the BCCI with 11 matches to be held in 19 days. That’s a week extra,” the source added.
Earlier this week, a report had also stated that the BCCI had requested the ECB to tweak the schedule for the Test series, with a view to creating a window for organizing the IPL.
The five-Test series between England and India starts with the first match at Nottingham (Aug-4-8), followed by Lord's (Aug 12-16), Leeds (Aug 25-29), Oval (Sep 2-6), and Manchester (Sep 10-14).
“The IPL will, in fact, be the perfect platform to warm up for the ICC event. The ICC is watching this space with keen interest and will not interfere with the logistics as long as it does not conflict with the World Cup window,” the source added.