The BCCI in all likelihood will organise the National T20 Championship for the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy in early January to kickstart the COVID-19-curtailed domestic season keeping the IPL-14 auctions in mind.
It has been learnt that the BCCI has already sent feelers to a few state associations where there are multiple grounds and five-star hotels to create a bio-bubble environment for a minimum of three teams.
“Yes, the IPL auctions this year will be important for at least two to three teams which is weak on Indian talent. For their talent scouts, IPL will be an absolute necessity. So it’s only logical that Mushtaq Ali happens before Ranji Trophy,” a state unit official told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
The official informed that BCCI is looking at those state units where there are at least three grounds within manageable distance with five-star facilities.
“There are at least 10 state units that will be approached and asked if they can create a bio-secure environment. The BCCI feels that if 6 out of 10 units give a positive response, then Mushtaq Ali can be completed in a two-week window and Ranji Trophy can start,” he said.
Like Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) is one of the potential hosts for the National T20 Championships with three grounds available — Eden Gardens, JU (Salt Lake) and Kalyani.
Many believe that CAB”s six-club inaugural T20 league will be an indicator for the state unit to check out if they are capable of creating a bio-bubble.
“The CAB had zeroed in on two hotels — Novotel and Hyatt for keeping the six teams in the bio-secure environment. However, Hyatt said that it will be difficult for them to provide exclusive hotel staff (room service and housekeeping) for bio-bubble.
“So CAB has booked 80 rooms for 6 teams and two complete floors to create a bio-bubble,” a senior CAB official privy to the development told PTI.
If the bio-bubble in club tournament works successfully, CAB can at least host one group of matches of Mushtaq Ali in Kolkata and Kalyani.