IPL 2021 had been postponed after several COVID-19 positive cases across the franchise. However, no official announcement had been made on whether the remaining tournament would be held, for a long time. It has now been announced that the tournament will resume in September 2021.
Previously, the BCCI had announced that they unanimously have taken the decision to postpone the tournament. They mentioned that they don’t want to compromise the player’s or other staff’s safety. The decision had been reached keeping the health, safety, and well-being of all stakeholders in mind. However, no tournament meant disappointment for IPL bettors. Even with the best prediction for IPL, they were unable to make a profit out of it. But now punters again have a chance to predict various outcomes by placing their bets and earning some quick bucks in IPL.
It has been a difficult time, particularly for India. The BCCI has tried bringing some cheer and positivity. Nevertheless, it was crucial for the tournament to be suspended.
Why was IPL 2021 Postponed earlier?
The announcement for the tournament suspension came after the increasing coronavirus positive cases in the IPL. The Sunrisers Hyderabad was the 3rd franchise to report cases when it had been confirmed that Wriddhiman Saha has tested positive and is isolating from the remaining team.
Following Wriddhiman, Kolkata Knight Riders report that Sandeep Warrier and Varun Chakravarthy have also tested positive. So, the match between Royal Challengers Bengaluru and Kolkata Knight Riders supposed to take place in Ahmedabad, was put off. Within just a few hours, there was news of two confirmed cases from the camp of Chennai Super Kings.
However, the good news is the tournament is resuming on 19th September, and the final will be on the day of Dussehra 2021. In a recent meeting of BCCI with the Emirates Cricket Board, ECB has given an oral nod to host the event. Now, there are discussions on the foreign players being available for the remaining games.
But, ahead of IPL 2022, it has been announced that teams are only allowed to retain three players ahead of the auction.
IPL Teams can Retain Only Three Players before Mega Auction
As BCCI makes possible arrangements for IPL 2021, it has set sight on the next plans to have ten teams from 2022 IPL.
Apparently, the IPL and BCCI officials had a meeting in Delhi. Both had agreed to have two more teams from next year. But there has been no official announcement on which two new teams are going to enter the IPL in 2022.
Other than zeroing in on the two teams, the BCCI has also talked about the retaining policy for each franchise. Even though, there seems to be disagreement on how wrong it can be in case new teams don’t get a few marquee players for IPL mega auction.
According to sources, the BCCI has commissioned legal work for two team’s tender documents. Also, sources say that the procedure is almost complete.
But during the board meeting, the retention rules for the eight existing franchises have also been discussed. It is certain that the teams will retain a maximum of three players. Even though some IPL franchises wanted up to four, the cricket board is sticking to three. The eight teams can also use their Right to Match Card. But, it is not yet clear if two or three are going to be allowed during the event of auction.
According to the reports, in case a franchise retains three players, the salary structure will be 15 Cr INR, 11 Cr INR, and 7 Cr INR. However, if they decide to retain two or one player, the salary structure will be 12.5 Cr INR and 8.5 INR or 12.5 Cr INR, respectively.
Some players might prefer the idea of not being retained and would like to be a part of the auction pool. This is because two more teams will be added. Hence, it can be expected that the franchises will rush to grab talent. So, the board is expecting that some of the top players will forward their names for the IPL auction.
Initially, the auction was going to take place in 2021. However, the franchises are suffering great losses due to the pandemic. With little time left between IPL 2020 and 2021, the mega auction has been postponed for a year. Now, the mega auction is all set to be held in December. The two new franchises are expected to be introduced by October.
As South Africa, West Indies, New Zealand, and England are confirming their participation in the second phase of IPL 2021, Australia is yet to confirm. If sources are to be believed, Cricket Australia has left it to the Australian players to decide if they would like to take part in the UAE-league of IPL in September 2021. About 20 players are part of 8 different franchises.
BCCI Taking Required Measures for COVID-19
To ascertain fool-proof safety, the BCCI has come up with strict guidelines for the rest of the matches of IPL 2021. As per reports, the cricket ball is going to be replaced completely during the next phase of IPL, in case it is hit into the stands by the player.
So, if the ball goes outside the stadium or on the stand, the fourth umpire will offer a replacement from the cricket ball library. The ball that went out of the field after being returned will be sanitized with sanitizing wipes or UV-C. This, too, will be done by the fourth umpire.
Previously, ICC had banned the use of saliva during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the BCCI, players are prohibited from spitting on the field. It is the duty of the BCCI to make sure that the coaching staff, players, and commentators are transported from the field to the aircraft in a team bus, securely. The bus will drop off the player onto the tarmac. Hence, players don’t have to pass through the airport terminal building. Thus, they can easily avoid contact with other people.