Despite a huge rise in COVID-19 cases in the city, the BCCI remains hopeful about conducting the scheduled IPL matches in Mumbai from April 10-25. 10 members of the Wankhede Stadium staff has tested positive for COVID-19. Indore & Hyderabad have been reserved as Standby venues for the IPL matches If the COVID-19 situation gets out of control.
Mumbai is scheduled to host 10 matches of the IPL 2021. But with an excess of 47,000 cases registered on Friday, Maharashtra is looking forward to imposing a potential lockdown. The major concern for the BCCI is the number of ground staff at the Wankhede tested positive for COVID-19 rise from 8 to 10 between Friday evening & Saturday morning. To add to the complexity, 6 members of the event management team have also tested positive for COVID-19.
“Yes, it was 8 positive cases yesterday as far as ground-staff are concerned. Today two more positive cases have emerged and all 10 have been sent back home and are isolated”.
“We are bringing fresh ground-staff from the Mumbai CA ground in Kandivali for preparations. Also, 6 to 7 event management staff hired by BCCI have also tested positive,” a senior Mumbai CA official told media. When a senior BCCI member was asked about the situation he admitted that the BCCI is concerned about the situation.
“Look, even if there is a lockdown, the teams are in bio-bubble and also it’s a closed-door event. So we are still confident that IPL games in Mumbai will be held as per schedule. The first game at the Wankhede is between Delhi Capitals & Chennai Super Kings on April 10”.
“But Hyderabad and Indore are there on standby in case the situation goes out of hand,” the BCCI told media on Saturday.
Currently, none of the teams in Mumbai- Delhi Capitals, Mumbai Indians, Rajasthan Royals, and Punjab Kings are practising at Wankhede. “Delhi Capitals and Punjab Kings for example are taking turns to train at the Brabourne Stadium and Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) ground. KKR is training in Navi Mumbai at the DY Patil before they leave for Chennai,” the official informed.
“We have enough backup staff to handle as we had factored in that the situation in Mumbai is grim at the moment. But yes, we are closely monitoring the situation,” the official added.