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Tuesday, October 12, 2021

How a 10-minute call got the COVID-19 hit tournament suspended

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The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) vice-president Rajiv Shukla on Tuesday (May 4) announced that the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 has been suspended due to rising COVID-19 cases. 

However, the fate of the IPL getting suspended was taken in just 10 minutes. Keeping things short and simple, BCCI secretary Jay Shah had informed the IPL general Council that it would be unable to carry on with the cash-rich tournament after the bio-bubble breach. 

Shah also added that the safety of the players is the top priority of the board and one cannot compromise on that. According to The Indian Express, one member wanted the lucrative T20 league to continue, however, after others disagreed, it was suspended. 

While the event faced issues after two players of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) test COVID-19 positive, however, things started going from bad to worse once Sunrisers Hyderabad’s (SRH) wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha tested positive ahead of the game with Mumbai Indians (MI). Once that happened, Shah spoke to the officials, and the event was suspended. 

“Frankly, things started unraveling once the positive cases emerged within the bio-bubble. We don’t know how many players, coaches, and support staff will test positive in the next few days. The secure bio-bubble no longer existed and everyone was worried. There was no other option. We could not continue with the tournament,” a top BCCI official, who was part of the meeting, told The Indian Express.

BCCI vice-president Rajiv Shukla said, “We have no other choice other than postponing the tournament as more cases were detected in the past few days. We had kept all precautions and protocols in place but the virus still sneaked in. We had a discussion and we all felt that it’s the right time to postpone the tournament”.

While reports suggest that BCCI is planning to stage the remaining matches in UAE after the T20 World Cup, there is nothing official as of now.

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