Sourav Ganguly says BCCI are planning to start domestic cricket from January 1, 2021
There may be a truncated domestic cricket season in India in the time of Covid-19.
“We have had extensive discussions on domestic cricket and we have tentatively decided to start the competitions from January 1, 2021,” Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly told PTI after an apex council meeting on Saturday.
The season is likely to start with the Ranji Trophy. One of the officials who attended the meeting said it could be stretched till June with most tournaments being conducted.The women’s one-day domestic competition is tentatively scheduled for March-April.
“Whatever cricket happens, will be by creating bio-secure bubbles. Many venues like Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Puducherry, Mumbai having more than one stadiums are being looked at,” said the official.
Tour of Australia
BCCI is awaiting the final itinerary from Cricket Australia for India’s tour Down Under. According to a tentative schedule shared with BCCI, the tour will start with a three-match ODI series from November 26 and the T20Is will be held from December 4. The Test series is slated to begin on December 17. Brisbane is scheduled to host one of the Tests but with the Queensland government yet to relax its 14-day quarantine protocols, the final dates have not been announced.
India’s Test regulars like Cheteshwar Pujara, Hanuma Vihari, who are not involved in IPL13, and the coaching staff will quarantine in Mumbai next week before departing for UAE. The squad will depart for Australia after IPL ends on November 10.
The selection committee is expected to meet soon to announce teams for all the formats. It is expected to be a 28-member contingent, factoring in the possibility of Covid replacements and quarantine.
England tour of India
BCCI remains hopeful of being able to start international cricket in India by hosting England next year. Although no decision has been taken yet, with the tour is scheduled to begin in February. “Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, Ahmedabad are all due to host matches as per rotation. A call will be taken later, if all venues can host Test matches, whether it will be a full five test series. There is always the option of staging more than one Test in Ahmedabad, which has in-house stay facilities by creating a bubble,” said the official.
The option of taking the series to UAE is being seen as the last resort.