The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President Sourav Ganguly has stated that is unaware as to how COVID-19 breached the IPL 2021 bio-bubble despite strict quarantine rules and SOPs in place. IPL 2021 had to be postponed indefinitely on Tuesday after a number of COVID-19 cases started emerging out of the bio-bubble. Ganguly, though, did admit that travel could have been one of the reasons
Speaking to the The Telegraph, Ganguly said, “I really don’t know what led to this situation inside the bio-security bubble. We will have to do a post-mortem and look into the reasons behind this. But travelling could have been an issue.”
On the difference between IPL 2020, which was successfully held in the UAE last year, and IPL 2021 in India, Ganguly explained, “Last year in the UAE, everything was restricted to three venues and within a limited area. There was no air travel involved. Here we had six different venues.
“You also have to look at the situation around the country. The way the number of people are getting affected on a daily basis is total madness. No one knows what is going to happen tomorrow. Things have gone out of control for everyone.
“When we started the tournament in Dubai, there were close to 700 cases in the UAE which increased by a few hundred in the later stages. Here it’s close to 4 lakh today. This proliferation of Covid-19 cases has been a major issue,” Ganguly further added.
The former India captain revealed that BCCI would suffer losses of around Rs 2,500 crore if IPL 2021 doesn’t resume. “If we fail to complete the IPL, the loss will be close to Rs 2,500 crore. That is going by early estimates.”
He, however, refused to term the suspension of the tournament a setback. Ganguly opined, “I wouldn’t say it’s a blow... Don’t forget last year we had no Wimbledon or Olympics. These are extraordinary times and we have to take it in our stride and move on. We can’t do much in these situations. Perhaps we have to only wait for things to improve.”
Asked about the likely period of resumption, Ganguly said that it was too early and lot of logistics would need to be worked out.
“There has got to be a lot of shuffling. Only a day has passed since we suspended the IPL. We have to speak to other boards and see if a window can be made available before the T20 World Cup... Lot of things are involved and we will slowly start working on them,” he explained.
--By A Cricket Correspondent