The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), on Saturday, listed out a new set of guidelines for the ‘Unlock 1.0’. The new set of guidelines pointed to the resumption of international air travel, sports events and large congregations ‘based on assessment of the situation’ in Phase 3.
The ease in aforementioned restrictions has given the BCCI a ray of hope to host the Indian Premier League sometime this year. The much-awaited IPL 2020, which was set to start from March 29, has been in doldrums due to COVID-19 outbreak. The cash-rich league has currently been postponed indefinitely in the wake of the pandemic. But the ‘Unlock 1.0’ guidelines have notched up the BCCI’s yearning of organizing the IPL 2020 extravaganza this year.
“Based on assessment of the situation, dates for restarting following will be decided for international air travel of passengers, gymnasiums, swimming pools, social/political/sports/entertainment/academic/cultural/religious functions and large congregations,” read the order issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
‘It’s a positive’: BCCI treasurer Arun Dhumal
BCCI treasurer Arun Dhumal called the development a ‘positive’ and said that it will encourage the board in taking further steps to plan the future.
“It’s a positive. If international travel resumes, and sporting activities will be allowed, then we can plan for the future,” he was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.
In the meantime, the board could also consider hosting a national camp to ensure players get back to their fitness and skill-based routine after being away from the sport for months. Most India players have been away from the action since the enforcement of lockdown.
“As far as getting a pool of players together for a camp, again we will have to wait for things to normalise further. What we can have for now is individual players working in facilities in their respective cities, based on advice from state governments,” said Dhumal.
The BCCI CEO Rahul Johri had earlier hinted that the IPL 2020 could be scheduled after the monsoon this year. As Australia have stated that they’re not in a position to hold the T20 World Cup this year, there’s a possibility that the IPL 2020 could be organized in the October-November window.
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