The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) will have to revert to the International Cricket Council (ICC) by June 28 on whether it will be able to host the T20 World Cup in the country. And in case, the situation does not improve by then, the tournament will be shifted to the United Arab Emirates, while Oman could be considered as the additional venue.
In its Board meeting on Tuesday – which was attended by the BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly – the ICC has told the Indian cricket board that it needs clarity on the venue amid the second wave of the pandemic in the country.
“The BCCI has time till June 28 to host the World Cup in India. If not, we will host the tournament in the UAE. But the BCCI will have the hosting rights,” BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly told Sportstar.
“In case the tournament is shifted to the UAE, then we are adding up another venue. They are thinking about whether there should be three or four venues,” Ganguly said. With a 16-team event to be staged, the three venues in UAE — Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah — may not be enough. As a result, the ICC is planning hosting a few games in Muscat, which has earlier hosted a few ICC events . However, a decision will be taken in due course of time.
Based on BCCI’s feedback, the world body will finalise the venue. “A final decision on the host country will be taken later this month. The Board also confirmed that the BCCI will remain the hosts of the event regardless of where the event is played,” the ICC said in a statement on Tuesday.
Earlier on Saturday, in the Special General Meeting, the BCCI had informed its member units that it will request the world body to give it a month’s time to decide on the venue for the World T20. While Plan B is ready in case the situation does not improve, the BCCI has informed the ICC that a tax waiver of approximately Rs 900 crore for the World T20 is being discussed with the government.
Ganguly to reach UAE on Wednesday for IPL recce
While the BCCI still has a month to reply to the ICC, the Indian board has already started preparations for the Indian Premier League – scheduled to be held in the UAE in September. While a BCCI delegation is already in the Emirates, Ganguly will join them on Wednesday to have discussions with the Emirates Cricket Board. While there is no clarity on whether the overseas players will be available for the tournament, Ganguly said that they “will go ahead” with whoever is available. However, the conversations are on with the England and Australian boards.
The BCCI chief and secretary were to supposed to travel to Southampton for the World Test Championship final, but that plan has been cancelled as the permissions could not be attained. India still features in the red list for flying to the UK.