Top officials of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have decided to approach the home ministry with a request to allow IPL matches in first week of May. By the first week of May, seven of the nine phases of the polling will be over.
“We will be requesting the home ministry again and will seek their approval to allow BCCI to hold matches in those states where elections are over in first week of May. We are mulling all options. Since this is a domestic tournament we want 60-70 per cent of IPL games to be held here,” a BCCI official said.
BCCI earlier had shortlisted South Africa, UAE and Bangladesh but will take a fresh stock of the situation.
The general elections are scheduled to take place from April 9 to May 12 with the declaration of results set for May 16.
On Wednesday, BCCI officials had a meeting, which was attended by president N Srinivasan, secretary Sanjay Patel, vice-president Rajeev Shukla and IPL CEO Sundar Raman to discuss the further course of action to be taken after election date were announced.
It is learnt that IPL title sponsor Pepsi has expressed their concern over IPL games being held in South Africa as it is not their strongest market.
According to sources, if less than 25 IPL games are to be played in first phase then, BCCI might choose South Africa. And if more than 25 games are to be played than UAE and Bangladesh might host the IPL. IPL chairman Ranjib Biswal said that the BCCI is still keen on hosting a bulk of the matches in India after the elections.
“Now that the election dates have been finalised, we are working towards hosting a majority of the matches in India. It is the Indian Premier League after all,” Biswal said. The chairman also revealed that the Indian board was still keeping all their options open in terms of choosing an offshore venue.