Mumbai: The eagerly-awaited Indian Premier League will start on 19 September in the United Arab Emirates with the final slated on 8 November, well-placed BCCI sources said on Thursday.
While the IPL Governing Council will meet next week to chalk out the final details and approve the schedule, it is understood that the BCCI has informally intimated the franchises about the plan.
Until now, 26 September was being touted as the start date for IPL 2020 but the BCCI has decided to get the tournament underway a week earlier to ensure Indian team has enough time to prepare for their tour of Australia later this year. India are scheduled to play a four-match Test series in Australia starting from 3 December and will need to stay in 14-day quarantine before they can step on the field.
The BCCI will be utilising the window freed up by the T20 World Cup this year which has been postponed by the ICC. The ICC had on Monday announced officially that the T20 World Cup in Australia would not be happening this year due to the coronavirus pandemic which paved way for BCCI to plan for IPL 2020 in that window.
While the dates are yet to be made official with the Governing Council meeting scheduled to take place later this week, sources have confirmed that BCCI has already informed all eight franchise about the new tentative schedule from 19 September. The franchises have been asked to prepare accordingly and gear up for the tournament.
It is expected that with each and every team needing at least a month’s time to train, the franchises will be leaving base by 20 August which gives them exactly four weeks time to prepare.
The cash-rich event was originally scheduled to start at the end of March but the COVID-19 pandemic and the travel restrictions that were put in place to contain the virus, led to an indefinite postponement.
However, BCCI President Sourav Ganguly maintained that the event will be held some time this year.