As the dates of Indian Premier League 2019 are clashing with the Lok Sabha General Elections this year, the BCCI is forced to give serious thought about hosting the IPL outside India.
This rumor got wind after BCCI officials met with the sports ministry and it seems like the cash-rich event might have to be organized outside India. The IPL has twice been hosted abroad — in 2009 (South Africa) and 2014 (partly in UAE) — because of general elections.
As per TOI reports, a BCCI delegation met ministry officials – apparently on the directions of BCCI CEO Rahul Johri – to understand government guidelines regarding the hosting of a tournament abroad. BCCI has been organizing IPL in India since 2008 with exception of two times.
“We explained to them that the key parties concerned are the ministries of home and external affairs. Apart from the other two ministries, the sports ministry’s approval is required only in case of hosting the tournament in India. Still, they (BCCI delegates) wanted to make sure about the paperwork or permissions required on the sports ministry’s part,” a source close to the development told TOI.
Johri has signaled that BCCI is looking to formulate organizing the IPL 2019 in India, as the official broadcaster and all the eight franchises were against taking the tournament outside India.
Logistical hassle and revenue loss always remain important factors. But BCCI's hand has been forced in the election year due to the government's inability to provide security for the event.
Apart from general elections, IPL has to contend with the 2019 World Cup as well, which will be played from May 30 to July 14 in England and Wales. According to Justice Lodha committee recommendations, a 15-day window is mandatory between the IPL and any upcoming international fixture. This means that IPL dates will have to be preponed, to accommodate the recommendations.
This means IPL has to begin in the last week of March so that the tournament can conclude by mid-May. However, that could mean a clash with the general elections.
Some reports have suggested that the BCCI is looking at three possible locations if it decides to move the league abroad — South Africa, UAE, and England.
(Inputs from Times of India)