The BCCI has allowed bubble-to bubble transfer in the second leg of the IPL 2021 for members involved in the recently ended Sri Lanka-India white-ball tour, players playing in England-India test series, Caribbean Premier League, and those participating in South Africa’s tour of Sri Lanka. The IPL 2021 which was postponed in May due to a sudden surge in COVID-19 cases will resume in the UAE from September 19.
On Friday, the BCCI has issued a 46-page health advisory in which the BCCI said, “Players and team support staff coming directly from the Bubble created for England vs. India series, Sri Lanka vs. South Africa series and the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) may be permitted to join the franchise squad without serving the mandatory quarantine period, provided they satisfy the below-mentioned criteria. Commentators and broadcast crew who are working on the above three series’ can also avail Bubble to Bubble transfers provided they satisfy the criteria.”
The bubble to bubble transfer from the CPL & England-India tets series in the UK was expected but the franchises were not sure if the same provision will be granted for members coming from the Sri-Lanka-India tour & Sri-Lanka South Africa series after Krunal Pandya, Yuzvendra Chahal & KL Gowtham had tested positive for COVID-19 in Sri Lanka which has also resulted in the isolation of eight other players who were identified as Krunal Pandya’s close contacts. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka will host South Africa for three ODIs and three Twenty20 Internationals from September 14.
The BCCI has also stated that those who are not a part of any bio-bubble will undergo six days mandatory quarantine. “All franchise team members must quarantine in their hotel room for 6 full days before entering the Bubble. Upon arrival and before commencing any group training activities, all team members who will be included in the Bubble will follow the below-mentioned COVID-19 RT-PCR testing plan. A nasopharyngeal swab will be taken for testing. Test reports are available within 8-12 hours after sample collection.”
“For passengers arriving from India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Pakistan, it is mandatory that the COVID-19 PCR report includes a QR code linked to the original report for verification purposes. The QR code must be presented at check-in and to representatives of the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) upon arrival in Dubai airports”, this provision is made in view of the reports of fake vaccination programs.
Further, the BCCI also stated that in all 14 bio-bubbles will be created including eight for the franchises, three for the match officials and match management team, and three more for the broadcast commentators and crew. Further, the advisory stated, “During the IPL 2021, members within a Bubble must travel only in the dedicated vehicles from a fleet of buses and cars accredited by BCCI, which will be sanitized regularly. The drivers of all such vehicles will also be in the respective Bubbles, tested regularly for COVID-19 and undergo temperature screening.”
The BCCI also issued a warning to those breaching bubble protocols saying, “Breach of any Bio-Secure Environment protocols by franchise members or their families will be subject to disciplinary action by the BCCI.”
The IPL 2021 will kick start on September 19 in the UAE with a superhit clash between CSK & Mumbai Indians. The matches will then shift to Abu Dhabi where the KKR will lock horns with RCB. Sharjah will host its first match on September 24 when RCB will lock horns with CSK. In total 13 matches will be played in Dubai, 10 in Sharjah & 8 in Abu Dhabi.