(Photo credit: Delhi Capitals Instagram)
MELBOURNE: Australian players, media, and coaches who are currently in the Maldives — after the suspension of the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League — may head back home by Sunday.
The IPL 2021 season was postponed on May 4 due to a rising number of Covid-19 cases and the entire Australian contingent had travelled to the Maldives due to a travel ban from India.
Cricket Australia (CA), the Australian Cricketers Association (ACA), and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) are awaiting confirmation from the Australian government that citizens who have recently been to India will be allowed to return to home shores after May 15, ESPNcricinfo reported.
As per the current conditions, the 38-member Australian contingent may take a charter flight from the Maldives on May 16. This will see the contingent travelling via Malaysia to finally reach Sydney. Upon reaching Sydney, the 38 members will have to undergo further quarantine which will last for 14 days, stated the report.
Earlier, Cricket Australia’s Interim CEO, Nick Hockley had praised the BCCI and the Indian board’s effort to get the Australian players back to their homes.
“I would say the BCCI have been absolutely fantastic. So they’re committed to not only the first movement to either the Maldives or Sri Lanka but they’re also then committed to putting on a charter to bring them back to Australia,” he had said.
Asked if Cricket Australia regrets letting the players go for this year’s IPL, Hockley said: “No, I don’t think so. I mean, our hearts go out to everyone in India. Clearly, I mean, I think the IPL, you know, put so much work, so much effort into putting on the tournament. They obviously did that on the best available information at the time and they’ve come to the decision over the last 24 hours that it’s in everyone’s — well, in the interests of the health and safety of everyone to suspend the tournament indefinitely.”
“At the moment — I was on the phone to my counterpart less than an hour ago and I can’t speak more highly for how the BCCI but also all of the franchises have worked to look after our players and put in plans to make sure that they get home safely and as quickly as possible.”