Australia v West Indies T20Is postponed, IPL to not clash with any international cricket

DUBAI: Australia’s home T20I series against West Indies has been postponed because of the Covid-19 situation, and that means the Indian Premier League (IPL) now has an uninterrupted window — between September 19 and November 10 — as far as international cricket is concerned. West Indies were scheduled to play matches in Townsville, Cairns and the Gold Coast on October 4, 6 and 9, with the series being seen as a precursor to the now-postponed men’s T20 World Cup, originally set to start on October 18.

Now the only potential clash for the IPL — even if just by two days — is with the proposed Lanka Premier League, which has a finish date of September 20. However, Sri Lanka Cricket last week stated that it is considering advancing the dates to ensure there is no overlap with the IPL. As such, only two Sri Lankan players — Lasith Malinga (Mumbai Indians) and Isuru Udana (Royal Challengers Bangalore) — are contracted in the IPL.

Meanwhile, Australia’s short limited-overs tour of England is expected to end on September 15, leaving players from both sides just about enough time to hop over to the UAE in time for the IPL, which will be held across Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. However, the IPL’s SOPs are yet to be made formal, and it isn’t known if players travelling from the UK — where the number of Covid-19 cases has been much higher than in the UAE — will need to undergo a quarantine period before entering the bio-bubbles of their respective teams, many of whom are likely to begin their training camps in the UAE after the third week of August. Most boards have either provided or agreed to provide no-objection certificates to their players to play in the IPL. However, there are still concerns with regards to the participation of South Africa players since their provincial and international borders remain closed for commercial flights.

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