In a major development, it has now been confirmed that the 2021 Men’s T20 World Cup is set to commence from October 17 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The tournament will culminate with the final on November 14. While the competition was originally supposed to be played in India, it has now been moved to the UAE but the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) continue to remain the hosts in collaboration with the local cricket boards.
It is further being learned that the tournament will start days after the IPL 2021 final which is currently scheduled on October 15. The remainder of IPL 2021 is also set to happen in UAE with the second leg starting on September 19.
BCCI yet to write to ICC about shifting T20 World Cup to UAE, Oman
Meanwhile, the BCCI is yet to write to the International Cricket Council (ICC) about shifting the marquee event to the UAE but it is being reported that it has already started its preparation for the tournament. What is being heard, the first round of the T20 World Cup will be split across two groups and played in the UAE and Oman.
The format of the Cup will see Round 1 having 12 matches comprising eight teams from which four (top two from each group) would qualify for the Super 12s. Meanwhile, four teams from this lot of eight - Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Ireland, Netherlands, Scotland, Namibia, Oman, Papua New Guinea - will make their way to the Super 12s and will join the top eighth ranked T20I sides.
Furthermore, the Super 12s phase, comprising 30 matches, will begin from October 24. The Super 12s, where teams will be divided into two groups of six each, are scheduled to be played at three venues in UAE- Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. This will be followed by the knockout games- the two semifinals and the final.
Third wave of COVID-19 likely to hit India later this year
It is further being reported that with Round 1 being co-hosted by just one venue in UAE and Oman, the BCCI is hoping to have enough time to refresh the pitches across the main grounds in UAE for the Super 12s.
Although the current pandemic numbers are climbing down, it is predicted that the third wave of COVID-19 will hit India later in the year and so the BCCI has taken this call which they are likely to make public soon before the ICC deadline.