The BCCI has announced that the 2022 Indian Premier League (IPL) will take place from the fourth week of March and end in May 2022. The BCCI is currently contemplating whether to host the 2022 IPL in India or go back to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The BCCI also has South Africa as another potential location.
2022 IPL Location Will Be Finalized On Feb 20
The BCCI decided to host the 2021 IPL in India as it ascertained that the COVID-19 situation was under control in the sub-continent. However, when the IPL was mid-ways through, an IPL bubble burst and many individuals tested positive, which forced the BCCI to suspend the IPL.
The BCCI was able to reschedule the remainder of the 2021 IPL after the T20 World Cup in the UAE and complete the tournament. Now the BCCI once again has to decide whether they want to host the 2022 IPL in India or play it safe and host it in the UAE.
BCCI officials are reported to have India as their first choice to host the 2022 IPL, but this time around, they will not be scheduling games all over the country as they want to restrict travel and keep the IPL bubble secure. The plan is to stage all of the games in Mumbai, which will be a big feat given that the 2022 IPL will see an expansion from 8 IPL franchises to 10 IPL franchises.
The omicron variant is also causing a spike in positive cases across India and other parts of the world. The BCCI knows that things will be a lot safer if they finalize the UAE as the official IPL location but has deferred taking that decision. The third alternative is to host the tournament in South Africa.
BCCI brass is expected to make a final decision on the 2022 IPL location by Feb 20 as they need time to work out the logistics and get the respective grounds ready.
IPL Auction Set For Feb 11 and 12
BCCI Secretary Jay Shah said that most IPL franchise owners had expressed their support of hosting the 2022 IPL in India. Shah said the BCCI would do everything that it can to make sure that it can run the 2022 IPL in India, keeping in mind the safety of all players, staff, and stakeholders.
However, he confirmed that the BCCI would have a plan B worked out if hosting the 2022 IPL in India was not feasible. Shah did confirm that the 2022 IPL auction will take place on Feb 11 and Feb 12. Players with the highest price tag going into this auction include D Warner, KG Rabada, R Ashwin and, D Bravo.
Two Extra IPL Franchises In 2022
The 2022 IPL will be a bigger and better version than before as the BCCI is set to add two new IPL franchises to this year’s tournament. The two new teams are Lucknow which RPSG Group purchased for 7,090 crore rupees, and Ahmedabad, which CVC Capital Partners purchased for 5,625 crores.
The two new IPL franchises were given the option to buy three players in advance and then spend their cap of 90 crores during the IPL auction in Feb for the rest of their team. Ahmedabad has picked up H Pandya, appointed him captain for the new franchise, and added S Gill and Afghan spinner R Khan.
Lucknow has decided to pick up KL Rahul and give him the captaincy along with Ravi Bishnoi and Marcus Stoinis. Andy Flower is the head coach for this team, while G Gambhir will serve as their mentor.
The 2022 IPL will provide fans with more action because of the two new IPL franchises. This will make it more difficult for the organizers to work out the logistics and create an IPL bubble, as with two new franchises comes more players and support staff.
Foreign Players Who Have Opted Out Of 2022 IPL
Several overseas players have already announced that they will not participate in the 2022 IPL. Some players opt out because they do not want to take the risk of traveling and playing while there is an outbreak of omicron, while some players just don’t want to put themselves in another bubble, especially when the bubble is going to carry on for nearly two months.
Some of the players that have opted out so far include Ben Stokes, Joe Root, Mitchell Starc, Jofra Archer, and Chris Gayle.