BCCI vice president Rajeev Shukla has clarified on Tuesday that IPL 2021 has and not cancelled, but postponed, indefinitely, owing to the rise in number of COVID positive cases within the bio-bubble. He further added that the decision on the resumption of the second half of the league stage will happen soon.
“I want to make it clear that IPL 2021 has been not cancelled. It has been suspended, it has been postponed, it has been deferred, so it will happen. The remaining part of this year’s IPL will happen. But in due course, when the covid situation improves, a decision will be taken about it,” said Shukla speaking to Star Sports.
“Few players wanted to leave the country. They had spoken to their franchisees and the franchisees also confided with us. But not many players were willing to leave the country. But keeping that in mind, and obviously, there is a panic-like situation, if people are scared, we have to look at that aspect also and we have to take steps accordingly. So, that’s why keeping their concerns in mind, their families’ concerns in mind, we have taken this decision,” Shukla explained.
A barrage of COVID-19 cases forced BCCI to indefinitely suspend IPL 2021 which on Sunday had completed 29 games in the league stage. The move was welcomed by all the franchises and the broadcasters.
The decision was announced after SunRisers Hyderabad batsman Wriddhiman Saha and Delhi Capitals spinner Amit Mishra became the latest addition to the list of affected members in the BCCI bio-bubble. Previously, Kolkata Knight Riders' Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier had returned positive results on Sunday. Chennai Super Kings' bowling coach L Balaji was among the prominent non-playing staff to test positive.
"The Indian Premier League Governing Council and BCCI in an emergency meeting has unanimously decided to postpone IPL 2021 season, with immediate effect," a statement from the IPL read after the development was confirmed by its chairman Brijesh Patel to PTI.
"The BCCI does not want to compromise on the safety of the players, support staff and the other participants involved in organising the IPL.
This decision was taken keeping the safety, health and well-being of all the stakeholders in mind," it added.