IPL 2024: Will the Second Leg Head to Dubai Due to Elections?

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The upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is shrouded in a bit of mystery regarding its venue for the second half. With India’s general elections looming, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is exploring the possibility of shifting the remaining matches to Dubai.

IPL

Elections Cast a Shadow on IPL Schedule

The key factor driving this potential relocation is the clash between the IPL schedule and the general elections. The Election Commission of India (ECI) is set to announce the election dates on March 16, 2024. This announcement will significantly impact the BCCI’s decision on the tournament’s venue for the latter half.

Sources close to the BCCI have revealed that a final call will be made only after the ECI’s announcement. Currently, some top BCCI officials are in Dubai, reportedly exploring the feasibility of hosting the second leg there.

Déjà Vu: 2014 IPL in UAE

This wouldn’t be the first time the IPL has found a temporary home in the UAE due to national elections. In 2014, the entire season was held there for the same reason. This historical precedent adds weight to the possibility of a similar move for the 2024 season.

Teams Prepare for a Potential Shift

Adding fuel to the speculation, media reports suggest that several IPL teams have requested their players to submit their passports. This move can be seen as a precautionary measure in preparation for a potential venue change to Dubai.

First Half Confirmed in India

The BCCI has already announced the schedule for the first half of the IPL, comprising 21 matches. The season kicks off on March 22nd with the much-anticipated clash between Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore in Chennai. The last match of this initial leg is scheduled for April 7th in Lucknow between Lucknow Super Giants and Gujarat Titans.

A Familiar Venue: Looking Back at IPL 2020

The UAE is no stranger to hosting the IPL. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic in India, the entire tournament was successfully conducted across three venues in the UAE – Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Sharjah. This experience provides a strong foundation for the BCCI to consider Dubai as a potential alternative if needed.

Uncertainties Remain: Fans Wait for Clarity

With the ECI’s announcement on the horizon, fans and stakeholders eagerly await the BCCI’s final decision. Will the IPL remain on Indian soil for its entirety, or will Dubai once again become the stage for the high-octane cricket battles? The coming days will hold the answer.

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