In what appears to be a 2009 redux, the general elections in India may force the Indian Premier League(IPL) out of the country once again. The second edition of the T20 tourney, organized by the Board of Control for Cricket in India(BCCI), was also moved out of the country due to similar reasons in 2009.
According to media reports, the BCCI is contemplating over shifting the whole or a portion of the tournament in the wake of general elections in the country next year.
The reports suggest that the cash-rich T20 league could be shifted to either Sri Lanka or Bangladesh due to the Lok Sabha polls. The BCCI has reportedly begun its preparations for the same.
The IPL is hosted in India between April and May each year, featuring prominent cricketers across the globe. Though the dates of general elections are yet to be announced, it seems like the BCCI doesn’t want to take any chances.
“A clear picture will emerge only after the dates for the Lok Sabha elections are announced. Until then, we are considering whether to have a few games in India and then move abroad, or vice versa. Both Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are short journeys, so logistically, it won’t be much of a problem,” a BCCI official told the Financial Express.
The Indian cricket body has already contacted the Sri Lankan and Bangladesh’s cricket boards in order to make necessary adjustments, if required.
The BCCI faced a similar situation in 2009 after the government declined to provide security amid the general elections in the country. Thereon, the BCCI was forced to move the tournament to South Africa.
The seventh edition of the IPL will feature eight teams in lieu to the existing situation. Mumbai Indians are the defending champions of the T20 tournament.