April 19, 2021

Indian Premier League

Indian Premier League

Mohali to not host matches owing to the ongoing Farmers protest in Punjab

BCCI has currently shortlisted Ahmedabad, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Bengaluru as potential venues for IPL 2021.

A general view of play at the PCA Mohali Stadium
 PCA Mohali Stadium. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/ALLSPORT)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is looking forward to hosting the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in India. Earlier it was reported that the Indian board is planning to conduct the entire tournament in Maharashtra and Pune because of the presence of four international venues including Wankhede, Brabourne, DY Patil and Reliance Stadium along with hosting the play-off games at the newly-built Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.

However, owing to the rise in the number of coronavirus cases in Maharashtra, BCCI started looking at other venues to smoothly conduct the IPL 2021 in India in the month of April and May. In the same light, BCCI has currently shortlisted Ahmedabad, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Bengaluru as potential venues for the T20 Championship.

The same decision by the Indian board didn’t go well with Punjab Kings (formerly known as Kings XI Punjab) as they felt that they would be at the receiving end of a massive disadvantage for not getting to play any games at home. Punjab’s chief minister had also shown disagreement for not seeing Mohali as a potential venue for IPL 2021.

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh tweeted, “I am surprised at the exclusion of Mohali Cricket Stadium for the upcoming IPL season. I urge and appeal to @BCCI & @IPL to reconsider their decision. There is no reason why Mohali can’t host IPL and our Government will make all necessary arrangements for safety against #Covid19.”

BCCI clears stand for not considering Mohali as IPL 2021 venue

Punjab Kings even wrote an official mail to the Indian board asking for a clarity for not considering Mohali as an option. Punjab Kings co-owner Ness Wadia said as quoted by Indian Express, “We have written to the BCCI to find out under what criteria they have selected the venues and why they have not selected us. We were hoping to have games in Punjab.”

BCCI finally clarified their stance on the whole matter and revealed the reason behind not considering Punjab for hosting IPL 2021. BCCI has decided to strike off Mohali owing to the ongoing farmers protest in the state. The Indian board is scared of encountering a situation wherein a IPL match is stopped due to an intervention by Farmers protest.

“We don’t want a situation to arise where we have an IPL match in Mohali and a farmer agitation march moves towards the stadium. It will attract media attention from all over the world. We don’t want such a situation to arise. Mohali is not among shortlisted venues due to the current scenario in the northern part of India. Except Punjab, we are monitoring most of the other venues. The elections also might force some changes in the venue list,” the BCCI official said.