‘‘The decision finally rests with the UAE government and the safety protocols there. I am told they have very sophisticated testing machinery there and even if they can look at a smaller percentage of fans as the NBA are doing it, it will be good. However, all of us want an uninterrupted IPL first’’ said Wadia to Gulf News.
Meanwhile ECB has declared that UAE might consider allowing spectators in stadiums if the Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) gives its consent.
IPL 2020 : ‘Franchise will have to manage its own logistics’ IPL GC Chairman Brijesh Patel
It was expected that the all travel and lodging arrangements for the franchises and the players will be managed centrally by the BCCI. But according to a report. Franchises will have to figure their own travel arrangements and accommodation in UAE. BCCI will coordinate with UAE authorities to ensure “discounted hotel rates” and share it with the franchises. It will then be the franchise’s discretion to settle for options provided by BCCI or make their own arrangements. Franchises will fly their players to UAE and back, as is the case during IPL in India every year.
“In all these years of IPL, the responsibility of accommodation, hospitality, travel etc – during the IPL – has been of the team owners. Nothing is going to change this year. The only change will be in the SOPs with regards to Covid,” GC chairman Brijesh Patel told TOI.
KXIP’S owner in unperturbed due at this new challenge.
Wadia chose to play it down: ‘‘I don’t look at it as a crisis. We have always adapted – in 2009, we had to shift the tournament to South Africa at a short notice and in 2014, we had staged 20 matches in the UAE. You can say we are used to it.’’
The last time IPL came to the UAE in 2014, Kings XI Punjab looked in unstoppable form and ended up runners-up to Kolkata Knight Riders in the final – something which remains their best performance till date. Asked if he felt that the UAE could be their lucky charm, Wadia readily agreed: ‘‘Yes, it was a lucky charm. You must also remember that Glenn Maxwell did superlatively during the tournament.’’
For the IPL 2020, Wadia has predicted that with players like KL Rahul in the team KXIP will surely do well.
“We certainly hope to do well this time,’’ he rounded off.