Ganguly confirms possibility of truncated IPL in light of coronavirus scare
The lucrative cricket league was earlier scheduled to commence on March 29 but the starting date was pushed forward after the Indian government ordered the implementation of precautionary measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
The BCCI top brass met with executives of all eight IPL franchises on Saturday to discuss future strategies in the wake of fears surrounding the WHO-declared pandemic.
"Safety is most important for the players and at the moment (with) what's going around in the world and India with the government directives this is all we can do. We have postponed remaining domestic matches," Ganguly told reporters following the IPL Governing Council meeting.
"If it (IPL) is (postponed till) April 15, then, in any case 15 days are gone, it has to be a truncated one. How truncated, how many games, I can't say at the moment."
The viral illness has claimed the lives of thousands of people around the globe leading to drastic steps taken by governments to restrict travel between borders. India has so far reported 80 confirmed cases of the disease but all sporting activities in the country have been suspended.
The India-South Africa series was cancelled despite an earlier notification stating that the matches would be played behind closed doors.
Deferring the cash-rich IPL, however, has dominated the headlines since it attracts some of the biggest stars in the cricketing world.
Ganguly admitted the BCCI's helplessness amidst the growing concerns over COVID-19 and said all stakeholders were now forced to wait and see further developments.
"We met with the owners, to tell them how it can happen and where do we stand at the moment. At the moment, it is just postponed. We will assess the situation," the former India skipper said.
"It will be re-assessed every week. I can't say at the moment (about any deadline). It has to be worked around. As much as we want to host the IPL, we also need to be careful about the security."
The financial losses incurred due to the postponement has been the major topic of discussion among the franchise owners. The possible rejigging of the schedule could include increased double-headers to finish the event on time.