Sri Lanka Crisis - Asia Cup moves to UAE; Lanka Premier League Postponed

Tags: Asia Cup 2022, Sri Lanka

Published on: Jul 20, 2022

Asia Cup is likely to be shifted to UAE without any changes in the schedule due to political unrest and economic instability in Sri Lanka, the host country for the 2022 edition. Similarly, the Lanka Premier League (LPL) has been postponed for the same reason without announcement of new dates. It was scheduled to be held from July 31 to August 21 in the country.

The primary concern of Asian Cricket Council (ACC) is the acute shortage of fuel in Sri Lanka that has played a key role in worsening its economy. Amid unrest in recent weeks, the country hosted successfully a tour of Australia without any significant hassles. Even though the matches are to be moved to in Sharjah and Dubai, Sri Lanka will remain the official host of the tournament.

The fuel shortage has led to drying up of food supplies and long hours of power cuts. Protestors stormed into the President and Prime Minister's residences lately. Amid severe internal disturbances, no impact was witnessed in the Australia tour throughout June and a couple of days in July when the foreign players were in the country. The tour was completed successfully with three T20Is, five ODIs and two Tests.

However, hosting a tournament is different from hosting a bilateral series. Asia Cup 2022 will feature several teams and requires multiple busses including luggage vans and sponsor vans with enough fuel. The floodlights simultaneously require fuel for the generators to run and provide electricity.

Arch rivals India and Pakistan will be playing two matches in the league phase and fans from both the countries might not show interest in traveling to Sri Lanka and enjoy the games.

The upcoming edition of Asia Cup will be played in a T20 format and this is the second time UAE is hosting the tournament. It hosted the 2018 season in the 50-over format and the matches were played in Sharjah, Abu Dhabi and Dubai from September 15 to 28. The Emirates is now being seen as the best alternate venue even though the temperatures in August and September will be extreme with high humidity.

2022 Asia Cup

This is the 15th edition of the tournament scheduled to be held between August 27 and September 11 as Twenty20 Internationals. It was originally scheduled in September 2020, but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of six teams are participating including India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.

India is the defending champion of the tournament. It defeated Bangladesh by 3 wickets in the 2018 Asia Cup Final held at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in Dubai. The next edition is scheduled to be held in Pakistan. However, frequent unhealthy relationship s between India and Pakistan leads to shifting the matches to another country.

2022 Lanka Premier League

The Lanka Premier League (LPL) is a T20 format domestic cricket tournament played in Sri Lanka. It is similar to the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the teams represent cities of the country like Colombo Stars, Dambulla Giants, Galle Gladiators, Jaffna Kings and Kandy Falcons. It was founded in 2018 by the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) and this is the third edition of the competition. The defending champion is Jaffna Kings, which has won both the editions.

The decision to postpone the tournament was taken by the SLC after a request from the Innovative Production Group FZE, which hold the rights of the tournament.

Sri Lankan Cricketer Sanath Jayasuriya & Mass Movement

Legendary cricketer Sanath Jayasuriya joined the mass movement of people-power in recent uprising with demands of president's resignation. He said the people of Sri Lanka will soon celebrate victory by throwing out failed leaders and the protests should continue without violation.

Jayasurya, Kumara Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene from the Sri Lankan cricket world have been vocal against the government for worsening economic condition in the country with shortages of fuel, food, medicine, electricity and other essential items.

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