IPL 2021 could be hosted by the Island nation, Sri Lanka. Srilanka is one of the nations eyeing to host the remainder of the 2021 IPL season – a move that would substantially benefit the finances of Sri Lanka Cricket If the BCCI agrees.
Sri Lanka Cricket has repeatedly attempted to bring the IPL to its shores in previous years, offering as recently as in 2020, but the BCCI has preferred the UAE as a backup venue. As things stand, the UAE appears to be the front runner to host the remainder of the tournament one more time. One might not forget the fact that England Cricket Board (ECB) has expressed interest to host the IPL 2021 in the United Kingdom.
Although it is inconclusive whether Sri Lanka Cricket has officially made its grounds available to the BCCI, the chairperson of Sri Lanka Cricket’s management committee, Arjuna de Silva, has expressed keenness to have the rest of the IPL played in Sri Lanka in September 2021. The Cricketing nation has four floodlit venues that may be suitable for IPL, in Khettarama (Colombo), Pallekele, Sooriyawewa, and Dambulla. The first three of those venues have successfully hosted matches in major ICC men’s cricket tournaments.
Sri Lanka also has a good experience conducting a T20 franchise tournament during the pandemic, having played the five-team Lanka Premier League in October and November last year. The IPL not only involves more teams, however but will likely need the use of more than one venue at a time. The Lanka Premier League was played solely at the Sooriyawewa ground. If the BCCI considers Sri Lanka as an option, there may also be concerns over Sri Lanka’s own worsening Covid-19 situation. Over the past week, the island has recorded almost 2000 daily cases – up from roughly 300 in mid-April.
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