A close source wanting to remain anonymous told the Indian Express that the team owners do want to take any chances on the safety and health of the players and all of them would be made to undergo the mandatory quarantine.
In an attempt to hedge all possible risks of Covid-19 infection, all the players participating in this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) year will undergo the mandatory quarantine of six days after reaching Dubai. The decision was unanimously agreed to by all the team owners in a meeting on Wednesday, the Indian Express reported. A close source wanting to remain anonymous told the Indian Express that the team owners do want to take any chances on the safety and health of the players and all of them would be made to undergo the mandatory quarantine.
In addition to the self isolation of the players, elaborate arrangements have also been done for multiple PCR tests of all the players before their departure and upon their arrival in Dubai. As per the protocol established by the Dubai government, the players will be tested within 96 hours before getting on their chartered flight to Dubai. Upon their arrival they will subsequently be tested again to ensure that none of the players contract the virus on their journey. A 14-day quarantine period has also been made compulsory for any of the players who tests positive in the PCR test. Players have also been told to install the Covid-19 testing mobile application app ALHOSN on their phones, according to the news report.
Apart from grappling with the challenges of conducting the latest IPL season on foreign land, the team managers also have their plate full with respect to the bio-security and Covid-19 arrangements. While the Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) will supervise the overall arrangements put in place, the team managers have been asked to get hold of their separate bio-security teams. Curtailing the team squad to a maximum of 24 players has also been decided.
If innumerable worries on the health and safety front were not enough, financial woes are also taking a toll on this year’s tournament. The Wednesday meeting was convened in the backdrop of the departure of this season’s sponsor Vivo. One of the franchise officials told the Indian Express that the team owners were orally told that Vivo is not on board with IPL this year. He also said that the BCCI is likely to issue a new Request for Proposal (RFP) to invite a replacement sponsor. However, even with the arrival of a new sponsor the financial prospects for both the BCCI and respective franchises from this year’s IPL are unlikely to be bright as the sponsorship amount would be substantially less than previous years due to the Covid-19 crunch.