The recent buzz in the sporting calendar is that the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) might be called off, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Tuesday, announced a 21-day lockdown- a massive blow for cricket lovers across the world. On Tuesday, the Olympics was also postponed for a year, keeping in mind the threat posed by the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus.
The current situation around the COVID-19 pandemic does not seem very encouraging for a sporting tournament to run as per schedule. Amid the circumstances, the day does not seem to be far when the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) abandons this season of the high-profile tournament.
The effects of the pandemic have brought the entire world to a standstill and the governments are struggling hard to find a solution.
Given how things stand, it is no better for when the Board had decided to postpone the commencement of IPL to mid-April. Earlier, co-owner of the Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), Ness Wadia suggested that the IPL should be cancelled as it would not be good to organise such a popular cricketing league in this world.
“The BCCI should really consider postponing the IPL now. As a premier event, we need to act with great responsibility. Contemplation of IPL is inhuman right now. We need to save lives, not IPL,” Ness Wadia said as quoted by The New Indian Express.
“Let’s say even if the situation improves by May and I hope it does, who is going to come and play? Will the (foreign players) be even allowed to enter the country?” Wadia added.
Once, the 21-day lockdown is over, things are expected to improve in India but it is extremely unlikely that the government will allow foreign visas and lift all restrictions.
“If the Olympics can be postponed by a year, IPL is a much smaller entity in that regard. It is becoming increasingly difficult to organise. At this point, the government is not even thinking about allowing foreign visas. With 21 day lockdown, it is virtually impossible that things will return to normalcy by April 14. It might improve but a lot of restrictions will be in place. So it will be foolish not to cancel the league,” a BCCI official was quoted as saying by PTI.