Amidst the decision of prize money cut steering a lot of questions, IPL has a few other things to worry about. The violent reach of Coronavirus has already spread almost every corner of the world and has made it to the heart of India as well. With 31 positive cases being confirmed across the length and breadth of the nation, IPL looks over at a troubling start of its 13th season.
The decline in 50% of prize money has not gone down well with the franchisees, and to add a little bit more misery, the fear of Coronavirus might affect a generally packed stadium. The recent announcement by the BCCI about prize money cut has an additional burden for these franchises, which involves paying the state a hosting fee amounting ₹50 Lakh that was previously ₹30 Lakh.
There are still three weeks to go before 2020 IPL season begins, but the concern remains how these three weeks will turn out to be, keeping in mind the deep routes of the virus in the places around the world.
India has only recently come in contact with a handful of COVID-19 cases, but the fear of an outbreak can not be entirely ruled out. In a situation such as this, large crowds showing up in a sports event is highly doubtful. Sponsorships have also turned cold, with only a few showing positive outcomes.
The state has also advised people to stay out of any public gatherings, which invokes a few questions; whether the audiences feel safe enough to come in hoards for a game? If people would buy tickets at such times? More importantly, if it is okay to sell tickets when the state has advised avoiding public gathering?
The BCCI has reached out to the centre via a written letter asking for advice in this situation. However, there has been no reply yet from the centre.
Though BCCI President Sourav Ganguly has previously stated with confidence that, IPL will happen as it is scheduled despite the fear of COVID-19 reaching the threshold. All eyes will be on the update of Coronavirus and its advancement in India and only time will reveal if the IPL 2020 will be another mega success. 2020 Indian Premier League is scheduled to start from 29th March onward.