Legendary India batsman Sunil Gavaskar said the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 can be held in September-October if the T20 World Cup is postponed by the International Cricket Council (ICC).
Sunil Gavaskar, speaking at Salaam Cricket 2020, said even if the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secures a window for IPL 2020, it will not be ideal to host the tournament in India due to the possible monsoon during September and October.
Gavaskar said the BCCI can think about hosting IPL 2020 overseas in either Sri Lanka or the UAE, given the two cricket boards have offered to host the cash-rich T20 league.
Meanwhile, Gavskar also said a shortened tournament will be feasible, considering the restrictions and safety protocols in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“If the IPL is held in Sri Lanka from September then it might be possible. If you play somewhere overseas then the home and away factor won’t be there. So instead of the 14 matches per team, the tournament will be reduced to maybe 7 matches per team. That might be possible and only then maybe the IPL can happen. Then we can have IPL in September-October, not in India because there can be monsoon at that time. Maybe, Sri Lanka or UAE can host the IPL,” Sunil Gavaskar said.
IPL 2020 has been postponed until further notice due to the Covid-19 pandemic. While the tournament has missed the April-May window, BCCI president Sourav Ganguly, in a letter to state associations and stakeholders, said the cricket board is hopeful of hosting the T20 World Cup.
IPL governing council chairman Brijesh Patel told this website that the BCCI is looking at the September-October window for hosting the IPL.
Australian government’s latest announcement positive sign for T20 World Cup: Gavaskar
Meanwhile, Sunil Gavaskar said the T20 World Cup can also go ahead as scheduled if the Australian government is confident of hosting the 16-team tournament.
While the ICC has deferred the final call on T20 World Cup to July, Australia will allow crowds of up to 10,000 at small stadiums to watch sport as part of plans to ease social distancing restrictions in July, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has said.
“After hearing what the Australian govt said, it seems like the T20 World Cup can happen. Players will have to reach Australia earlier than usual for the 14-day quarantine period and then for the practice matches. If the ICC accepts that the tournament will have to happen then it will be difficult to hold the IPL. If the T20 World Cup got cancelled then only the IPL window was possible.
“The T20 World Cup can happen but there will be 16 teams in the tournament with 15 players each including their support staff, doctors, etc.
“It will be difficult to hold but if the Australian government says it can happen, then it can happen maybe in October-November. There is still some time, maybe the curve in India also will flatten by then,” Gavaskar said.