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Coronavirus scare: IPL to begin from April 15

Coronavirus scare: IPL to begin from April 15

Amid the rising concerns regarding the coronavirus outbreak, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has decided to postpone the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Originally, the tournament was set to begin from March 29, but will now it be held from April 15. The same has been conveyed to the franchises.

Talking to IANS, a BCCI official said that the cricket body thought that the best way forward is to hold the cash-rich league from April 15.

"Yes, the internal decision has been made to postpone the start of the tournament and it will begin on April 15, the BCCI has informed the franchises about the same," the official said.

On Wednesday, the government announced a cancellation of all visas, except for a few official categories, till April 15 in the wake of the growing scare. A meeting was held at Nirman Bhavan, Delhi where it was decided that all existing visas, except diplomatic, official, UN/international organisations, employment and project visas, stand suspended till April 15.

The decision comes ahead of the meeting between IPL team owners and BCCI officials on Saturday. The owners will talk with the officials prior to the commencement of the IPL Governing Council meeting and the way forward will be discussed then.

The two major concerns for the franchises will be bringing foreign players on board to play matches and see that the fans make it to the stadiums.

A franchise official told IANS that they are okay with the cash-rich tournament starting from April 15, but they need clarity on the availability of the foreign players. He added that IPL loses its charm if they don't have the four foreigners in the teams.

Meanwhile, the Maharashtra government, which discussed the outbreak on Wednesday announced a ban on sales of IPL tickets in the state.

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