The Indian Premier League (IPL), the professional Twenty20 cricket league founded by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), was suspended indefinitely with immediate effect on Tuesday after several cricketers taking part in the league tested positive for Covid-19.
The IPL media advisory made the announcement that the governing council and the BCCI in an emergency meeting have unanimously decided to postpone IPL 2021 season.
In the statement, the BCCI mentioned that the decision was taken in regard with the “safety, health and wellbeing of all the stakeholders in mind” as they did not intend to “compromise on the safety of the players, support staff and the other participants involved in organising the IPL”.
UPDATE: The Indian Premier League Governing Council (IPL GC) and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in an emergency meeting has unanimously decided to postpone IPL 2021 season with immediate effect.
— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) May 4, 2021
“These are difficult times, especially in India and while we have tried to bring in some positivity and cheer, however, it is imperative that the tournament is now suspended and everyone goes back to their families and loved ones in these trying times… The BCCI would like to thank all the healthcare workers, state associations, players, support staff, franchises, sponsors, partners and all the service providers who have tried their best to organise IPL 2021 even in these extremely difficult times,” the statement read.
Following the BCCI’s announcement, Cricket South Africa and Cricket Australia in along with Australia Cricketers’ Association issued statements in support of BCCI’s decision and said they would ensure that the players and support staff were expedited home safely.
Cricket Australia and the @ACA_Players understand the decision of the BCCI to indefinitely postpone the 2021 Indian Premier League for the safety and wellbeing of all participants. pic.twitter.com/M612hrnZFo
— Cricket Australia (@CricketAus) May 4, 2021
Wriddhiman Saha, the Indian cricketer who was playing for the Sunrisers Hyderabad team, and spinner Amit Mishra who was playing for Delhi Capitals in the IPL tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday, according to a report by the PTI. The Sunrisers Hyderabad had a match scheduled on Tuesday evening against the Mumbai Indians.
Bowlers Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier who were playing for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL this year along with Chennai Super Kings bowling coach L Balaji also tested positive on Monday in the third round of testing in the last four days. The Kolkata Knight Riders versus Royal Challengers Bangalore match, that was slated on Monday, was rescheduled.
The IPL had begun on April 9 that ran 29 matches with the final match scheduled on May 30. The matches had no live audience at the stadium but was being telecast live on TV channels and Disney+ Hotstar.
India has recorded 3, 447, 133 active cases with 2, 22, 408 deaths as of Tuesday, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare data.
As the second wave of Covid-19 hit the country, the Centre has been struggling to tackle it with lockdown like restrictions in several states like Delhi, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and others. Cinema halls, theatres, restaurants, pubs, gyms, sports complexes, schools and colleges have been shut in these states to curb the rising cases.