The ICC has decided to buy some more time before they could decide on the fate of the ICC T20 World Cup 2020. It is closely looking at the progress being made in Australia as well as New Zealand against the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and is hopeful of staging the event as per schedule later this year.
The ICC World T20 2020 was to be played in October-November in Australia. However, the chances of the tournament moving forward as planned didn’t seem too promising in the recent weeks. Recently, a statement from the Chief Executive of Cricket Australia Kevin Roberts came that the tournament is at a “very high risk” and it wasn’t well-received by the cricket lovers all over the world.
This week, however, the Sports Minister of Australia, Richard Colbeck, said in an interview that the pandemic curve had been flattened in the country and due to that they were a “fitting host for an international sporting spectacle”. He was too optimistic and said that event the spectators could be allowed into the grounds based on the situation we have at the time of the event.
In May, the Sports Minister had mentioned that the major problem was to manage the crowds and not the participating sides in hosting the upcoming marquee event. New Zealand is also set to host the Women’s World Cup in February-March 2020 and the country has recently been declared completely pandemic-free. This has certainly allowed ICC to believe that they can wait a bit longer before working out different alternatives in case they have to defer the T20 World Cup to 2021.
The ICC board has agreed on continuing to discuss various options to develop a contingency plan in their recent meeting, “whilst planning for delivery of the events in the scheduled window is ongoing.”
“The situation surrounding the global pandemic is evolving rapidly and we want to give ourselves the best possible opportunity to make the right decision for the whole sport,” said Manu Sawhney – the ICC’s chief executive. “The health and well-being of everyone involved is our priority and other considerations fallout from that.
“We will only get one chance to make this decision and it needs to be the right one and as such we will continue to consult with our members, broadcasters, partners, governments and players and to ensure that we make a well informed decision.”
The fate of the mega event remains undecided yet as we move further close to the event. Let’s wait and watch how things unfold in the coming weeks.