IPL 2020: Start of tournament postponed to April 15
- It is also likely that once the IPL begins on the 15th of April, the matches will be held behind closed doors.
The start of IPL 2020 has been postponed, with the tournament now expected to start on the 15th of April.
The IPL was originally scheduled to kick off on the 29th of March, with Mumbai Indians hosting Chennai Super Kings at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, but following the government's guidelines to prevent a mass outbreak of COVID-19, the IPL's Governing Council has had to make the decision, with BCCI top brass of President Sourav Ganguly and Secretary Jay Shah also involved in the decision-making process.
It is also likely that once the IPL begins on the 15th of April, the matches will be held behind closed doors, various reports say.
While the Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, Kiren Rijiju, had said sporting events would not be completely cancelled as long as they were strictly adhering to guidelines and discouraging mass gatherings, the external affairs ministry advised the BCCI to not have the tournament start on the originally scheduled date.
However, amidst the news of the postponement, former IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla told TV Channel Times Now that the IPL would go on as per the original schedule.
India has already suspended international visas until the 15th of April, which would have meant that foreign players would not have arrived for the originally planned start of the IPL.
India Today reported that while the franchises agreed to hold games behind closed doors, they were averse to the idea of having the tournament go on without the services of their foreign players.
However, it should be remembered that this is only a tentative postponement, as any further extension on the suspension of visas by the Ministry of External Affairs could mean a further postponement or outright cancellation of this year's IPL.Published 13 Mar 2020, 15:10 IST