In a major development, BCCI president Sourav Ganguly on Monday confirmed that the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, originally slated to be held in India, will now be shifted to the UAE, as per news agency PTI.
“We have officially intimated the ICC that the T20 World Cup can be shifted to the United Arab Emirates. The details are being chalked out," Ganguly said. “The decision was taken keeping health safety concerns of all stakeholders in mind."
Ganguly also confirmed that the qualifiers will be played in Oman.
“We are still finalising the dates. But it has been decided that the qualifiers will be held in Oman while the main group matches will be played in the UAE," Ganguly told Sportstar.
The mega-event is to be held in October-November but BCCI will remain as the hosts.
There were speculations over the fate of the marquee event considering the rising cases of coronavirus in India. The BCCI had had asked for more time from the International Cricket Council (ICC) before taking a call on the venue for the event.
ICC had then given BCCI a four-week window to decide whether it can host the event in India.
However, the fate of the T20 World Cup venue has been sealed with UAE set to host the tournament for the first time in history. The BCCI has already announced that the remainder of IPL 2021 will also be completed in UAE.
When asked if October 17 has been finalised as the start date of the tournament, Ganguly said: “We will be able to finalise itinerary details in some days. October 17 start hasn’t yet been finalised."
Even an ICC spokesperson confirmed that the global body is yet to zero in on a final schedule.
BCCI secretary Jay Shah had earlier revealed that the board was to inform the ICC of its decision to shift the world cup on Monday and that the game’s global governing body will decided the dates for the event.
“We will inform the International Cricket Council today that we are shifting T20 World Cup to UAE. Dates will be decided by the ICC," Shah told news agency ANI.
Last week, Shah had already hinted that due to the coronavirus situation in India, the tournament may not be held in the country. “Due to the COVID-19 situation in our country, we may shift the tournament to UAE. We are monitoring the situation closely, the health and safety of players are paramount we will take a final call soon," Shah was quoted as saying by ANI.
With PTI Inputs