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IPL 2020: After UAE Agrees to Host IPL, World Rugby Cancels Dubai Sevens Over Covid-19 Fear

While the BCCI is gearing up to stage its marquee event IPL 2020 in UAE in September, another high-profile tournament - the Rugby Sevens, scheduled to be played in November in Dubai, has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. This comes only days after the BCCI and the ECB's (Emirates Cricket Board) talks about hosting the IPL in the middle-east.

Cricketnext Staff |July 30, 2020, 3:52 PM IST
IPL 2020: After UAE Agrees to Host IPL, World Rugby Cancels Dubai Sevens Over Covid-19 Fear

While the BCCI is gearing up to stage its marquee event IPL 2020 in UAE in September, another high-profile tournament - the Rugby Sevens, scheduled to be played in November in Dubai, has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. This comes only days after the BCCI and the ECB's (Emirates Cricket Board) talks about hosting the IPL in the middle-east.

Ever since the advent of Covid-19, cricket had come to a complete halt. In fact ICC had a few meetings, whether the T20 World Cup in October -- to be hosted by Australia, should take place or not. Eventually, that too was cancelled, and the window was allotted to the IPL.

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When the reports of IPL being moved to UAE were confirmed, Mubashshir Usmani, the ECB’s secretary general, was the first person to call UAE safe to host the tournament.

He had said, "“Firstly, we are extremely pleased with how the UAE Government responded to the virus, which was as early as February.”

“We continue to see encouraging numbers across the country - in decreasing cases and increasing recoveries.

“Secondly, we will fully support any requirements stipulated by the relevant Health Authorities in regards to Covid-19 safety measures and management.”

On the other hand, what comes as a surprise now is that, Dubai Rugby Sevens stands cancelled for the first time in 50 years. “After a comprehensive consultation process and constructive dialogue with the host organisations, it has been decided that the combined men’s and women’s Dubai and Cape Town rounds of the [Series], will not take place,” World Rugby said.

“The decisions were taken in line with relevant government and international public health authority advice, and with the health and wellbeing of the rugby community and the wider public taking precedence.

“Both hosts are due to return to a full series schedule beyond this season.”

Gary Chapman, the president of the tournament’s owners and organisers Emirates Group Services and dnata, that the decision was understandable.

“We are of course disappointed not to be hosting the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens for the first time in 51 years,” Chapman said.

“But we understand the extraordinary circumstances surrounding today’s cancellation of the opening tournaments of the new season.

“With 28 national teams from 18 countries on six continents, the current pandemic has created a unique challenge to logistics with each country facing differing levels of restrictions on travel around the world.”

Now this scenario raises questions galore, if the BCCI is putting players' health at risk, if there is still a major Covid-19 scare in the UAE? Also if there is a logistical challenge to host Rugby tournament, how will the BCCI and ECB host the tournament, about the same time when the former was supposed to take place?

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Also the BCCI is yet meet with primary stakeholders including franchises, broadcasters and sponsors over the following two days to finalise finer details of the tournament.

In it, the board is expected to a hand over a comprehensive Standing Operating Procedure (SOP) during the weekend meetings.

The franchises had multiple questions ranging from details of the bio-secure bubbles to whether families can travel with the players. The newspaper reported that each team is likely to be put in separate bubbles, with no interaction with outsiders except through pre-appointments.

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 Australia 3028 116
2 New Zealand 2406 115
3 India 3085 114
4 England 3882 105
5 Sri Lanka 2454 91
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 5093 127
2 India 5819 119
3 New Zealand 3716 116
4 South Africa 3345 108
5 Australia 3518 107
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 Australia 5285 278
2 England 4564 268
3 India 9319 266
4 Pakistan 5470 260
5 South Africa 4380 258
see more