IPL in UAE gets provisional govt. nod

 thehindu.com  08/02/2020 16:41:48 

After being informed about the Central Government having provisionally granted permission for the Indian Premier Leagues (IPLs) 2020 edition to be rescheduled in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) due to COVID-19 outbreak, the IPL governing council on Sunday among other major decisions postponed the final to November 10 to adhere to the broadcasters request.

Besides deciding to stage the first-ever weekday final, also coinciding with the Diwali celebration, the governing council stamped the proposal of advancing the start of night matches from 8 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. While the squad size of all eight teams will be capped at 24 players per team, it was also decided to not allow spectators in any of the three venues - Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah - in the initial phase of the tournament. The council decided to not tinker with any of its sponsorship deals.

According to a member of the governing council, although the formal letter of clearance is expected in a day or two, the BCCI has got verbal clearance from the government.

While most of the decisions were a mere formality, the franchises will still be waiting to be informed about the standard operating procedures (SOPs) and the fixtures. It is being finalised and will be shared with the franchises soon, said the GC member, on condition of anonymity.

Capping the squad size to 24 players wont affect the teams much since only three of the eight franchises - Kings XI Punjab, Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad - have a squad size of 25, the maximum limit at the time of the auction.

Chinese sponsors to stay

In the wake of the governments supposed movement against Chinese entities in the aftermath of the last months standoff in the Galwan Valley, the BCCI had announced it will review IPLs sponsorship deals. However, the governing council decided to stick to the sponsors citing lack of time to look for alternatives. Four of IPLs major sponsors have investment by Chinese firms.

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