Cricket Control Council of India (BCCI) decided to postpone October-November World Championship T20 in the UAE, taking into account the situation with the pandemic in the country was referred to the ICC at the Council meeting on Monday. As such, the UAE will be home to Indian cricket away from home for the remainder of 2021, and the remainder of the IPL will also be held there in September.
The preliminary stage of the World Championship is expected to begin on October 17, a few days after the end of the IPL. To ease the strain on fields in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah, where 31 IPL games will be played over 25 days, it was decided to host the first round of the 16-team world tournament in Oman. Eight teams – Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Ireland, Netherlands, Scotland, Namibia, Oman and Papua New Guinea will battle for four Super 12s qualifying spots.
According to the preliminary plan, starting October 24, 12 teams will compete at the three leading stadiums in the UAE. The final will take place on November 14th.
A month ago, the BCCI was looking for time to try to keep the T20 World Cup in India and nine places made the final list to host it. But India’s current disconnect from the world due to international travel restrictions and scientific evidence that does not rule out a third wave of infections has closed the door to any such plans.
“After much deliberation, it was decided that the safety of players and other stakeholders is paramount and with that in mind, it is best to move the T20 ICC Men’s World Cup to the United Arab Emirates and Oman,” said the BCCI Secretary. Jay Shah wrote to state associations.
“On the other hand, the BCCI remains the venue for the T20 FIFA World Cup, and with his previous IPL experience in the UAE, we can confidently say it will run smoothly,” BCCI President Surav Ganguly wrote to the BCCI members.
India would have lived seven years without hosting a world championship on its soil, as the next opportunity will not come until 2023 when it hosts the ODI World Championship. The last ICC event in India was the 2016 T20 FIFA World Cup.
The move to the UAE solves the tax exemption issue for the BCCI. The ICC wanted the host government to be taxed if its government did not opt out. This responsibility would amount to over Rs. Rs 900 crore or more. Rs 225 crores in case of partial refusal. While the BCCI retains the rights to host the FIFA World Cup, the relocation of the FIFA World Cup from India is aimed at the immediate need to resolve the tax dispute. In the long term, BCCI officials want the global organization to adjust the tax deficit in line with event costs. “We will do our best to advise ICC not to be tough on tax incentives as ICC events in India are much more cost-effective than in countries outside Asia,” said a BCCI spokesman.