The International Cricket Council (ICC) have finally officially postponed the 2020 T20 World Cup opening up the cricket schedule for the Indian Premier League (IPL) to be played later this year.
The T20 World Cup was scheduled to take place in Australia in October and November, but had long been expected to be postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The ICC confirmed on Monday evening that the event would be postponed, offering up new windows in October-November 2021 and October-November 2022.
The decision offers certainty which will enable numerous national bodies to materialise their cricket schedules, including the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) which has floated playing the IPL in the October-November window.
India is currently struggling with the coronavirus outbreak, with more than 40,000 new cases confirmed on Monday, adding to the 1.12million confirmed cases, meaning the IPL would likely need to be hold overseas, with the UAE appearing to be the most viable option.
ICC Chief Executive Manu Sawhney said: “We have undertaken a comprehensive and complex contingency planning exercise and through this process, our number one priority has been to protect the health and safety of everyone involved in the sport.
“Our Members now have the clarity they need around event windows to enable them to reschedule lost bilateral and domestic cricket.”
Another key Member impacted by the decision is Cricket Australia (CA) who had been years into planning this year’s T20 World Cup, having successfully hosted the women’s edition in March before the global COVID-19 outbreak.
Interim CA chief executive Nick Hockley said: “The complexities and risks around hosting a 16-team international event in October in the current environment ultimately proved sufficient for the ICC to postpone the event.
“We are confident that with this decision, we will give ourselves the best chance to safely welcome fans into the outstanding venues across the country to enjoy watching the worlds best men’s cricketers compete in this major global event in either 2021 or 2022.
“Cricket Australia now looks forward to hosting a safe and successful summer of bi-lateral cricket.”
As a result of the T20 World Cup, it is anticipated a wave of international and domestic cricket calendar announcements will come in the coming weeks.