There have been several doubts over the continuity of IPL 2021 amid the deadly second wave of COVID-19 that has been wreaking havoc in India. As a result, several players have voiced their concerns.
Delhi Capitals and India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has pulled out of the tournament in order to be beside his family in such difficult times. Several Australian players, including Royal Challenger Bangalore’s Kane Richardson and Adam Zampa, and Rajasthan Royals’ Andrew Tye have decided to fly back home. Those players argued that they did not want to be ‘locked out’ of their own country.
In light of such recent developments and the continuous debates on whether continuing with the IPL makes sense, BCCI Chief Sourav Ganguly has reiterated that the tournament will continue despite these small hiccups.
“So far, it’s going on as scheduled,” the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly told Sportstar.
While sources at the England and Wales Cricket Board and Cricket Australia decided against calling their players back from India despite strict travel ban imposed on travellers from India, they have assured that they will do anything possible to facilitate the return of players, if and when they choose to leave.
A joint statement from Cricket Australia and Australian Cricketers’ Association read, “Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers’ Association remain in regular contact with Australian players, coaches and commentators taking part in the Indian Premier League, which is being conducted under strict bio-security protocols,” they said.
“We will continue to listen to feedback from those on the ground in India and the advice of the Australian Government. Our thoughts are with the people of India at this difficult time,” the statement added.
Franchise officials have also revealed that if a player wishes to pull out of IPL 2021 in such trying times, they will have the full support of the team and personnel.
“As of now, there is no communication in calling off the tournament, so we are planning everything to keep players motivated and safe. If any player wants to pull out due to family/personal reasons, we will do everything possible to help him,” a franchise official said.