The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Friday decided to suspend Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 till April 15, 2020, as a precautionary measure against the ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
“The BCCI is concerned and sensitive about all its stakeholders, and public health in general, and it is taking all necessary steps to ensure that, all people related to IPL including fans have a safe cricketing experience,” the board said in a statement.
“The BCCI will work closely with the Government of India along with the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and all other relevant Central and State Government departments in this regard,” it added.
Earlier during the day, the Delhi government prohibited all sports activities that include a gathering beyond 200 people including the IPL in the capital. With six cases getting confirmed in Delhi, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said, “All the sports activities including IPL matches have been postponed in Delhi till further notice.” Delhi is home to the Delhi Capitals IPL franchise.
IPL was due to start on March 29 in Mumbai and Delhi’s first game was scheduled on March 30. Before Delhi, Karnataka also expressed their unwillingness to host IPL matches, while Maharashtra has banned the sale of tickets.
India has reported more than 70 coronavirus cases so far and recorded its first COVID-19 death on Thursday in Karnataka.