MUMBAI: Bowing to the inevitable, the Indian Premier League governing council (IPL GC) and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), in an emergency meeting Tuesday, unanimously decided to postpone IPL 2021 season, with immediate effect.
According to news reports, the announcement came after a Sunrisers Hyderabad player tested positive ahead of the team's match with Mumbai Indians, scheduled for later Tuesday.
The decision also comes in the backdrop of the Chennai Super Kings informing the IPL governing council that the squad had gone into a week-long quarantine from Monday and would therefore be unavailable for Wednesday's fixture where CSK was scheduled to take on the Rajasthan Royals.
Host broadcaster Star India issued the following statement after the IPL governing council announced the suspension of world cricket's richest annual cricket tournament: “Star India supports BCCI’s decision to postpone IPL 2021. The health and safety of players, staff and everyone involved in the IPL are of paramount importance. We thank the BCCI, IPL governing council, players, franchisees and sponsors for their support. We are also indebted to our employees, on-air talent, production, and broadcast crews for trying their best to spread positivity by delivering the broadcast of IPL 2021 to millions of homes in the face of challenging circumstances.”
A statement issued by the IPL governing council further reads: "The BCCI does not want to compromise on the safety of the players, support staff and the other participants involved in organising the IPL. This decision was taken keeping the safety, health and wellbeing of all the stakeholders in mind.
"These are difficult times, especially in India and while we have tried to bring in some positivity and cheer, however, it is imperative that the tournament is now suspended and everyone goes back to their families and loved ones in these trying times.
"The BCCI will do everything in its powers to arrange for the secure and safe passage of all the participants in IPL 2021.
"The BCCI would like to thank all the healthcare workers, state associations, players, support staff, franchises, sponsors, partners and all the service providers who have tried their best to organise IPL 2021 even in these extremely difficult times."
Tuesday's decision to indefinitely suspend the IPL follows on from the postponement of the game between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kolkata Knight Riders, which was scheduled to take place in Ahmedabad on Monday evening, after two KKR players tested positive for Covid-19.
IPL reschedules KKR-RCB match after 2 KKR players test +ve
(Updated with Star India statement)