If GC okays, IPL-2021 to start on April 9, final on May 30

News Network
March 6, 2021

New Delhi, May 6: The 2021 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is likely to be played from April 9 to May 30 subject to the approval of the Governing Council (GC). In another development, while the date of the all-important GC meeting to decide on the venues for the 14th edition of the league is yet to be finalised, it is most likely to be held next week.

Speaking to ANI, a GC member on conditions of anonymity said while the final approval will be given in the GC meeting, the league is expected to start on April 9 and a call on the venues will be taken next week.

"We haven't yet decided on the day of the GC to decide on the venues, but the meeting will take place next week. As per the proposal, the IPL will get underway from April 9 and the final will be played on May 30," the GC member said.
Progressing from the initial idea of hosting the 2021 edition of the IPL in one city, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is exploring the option of playing the league across four to five cities. While the logistical part will need further discussion, the idea has been floated and is being discussed by the senior officials of the board.

A BCCI official in the know of developments said the idea has indeed been discussed and while it is still early days, the 14th edition of the league could well be played in more than one city if things go as per plan and the GC gives an approval.

"We are exploring the possibility of conducting the IPL at more venues than originally planned. The intent is to take it to more fans as the situation is moving towards normalcy. The feasibility of the bio-secure bubble and logistics will of course be crucial to determine the venues finally. It is a fluid situation and the health of the participants is our primary concern," the official had said.
Some of the cities that have been discussed are Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad.

While the tournament is still some time away, franchises too are open to the idea of having the league in more than one city as that will help to stay flexible with an eye on the COVID-19 situation.

While the BCCI is keen to take the most successful domestic league to as many fans as possible, the board is also clear that the bio-bubble restrictions will be made keeping the safety of the players in mind as was the case when the tournament was moved to UAE in 2020.

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News Network
April 7,2021

Mumbai, Apr 7: The Indian Premier League is not only one of the world's most lucrative annual sporting properties but also among the most durable, with not even the lengthening shadow of the Covid-19 pandemic apparently able to stop the Twenty20 juggernaut.

Last year's delayed tournament was shifted to the United Arab Emirates but the 14th edition returns to India, where the coronavirus situation has worsened significantly in recent weeks.

The surge in new cases could yet scupper plans to host the tournament in bio-secure bubbles at six venues across the country, starting on Friday in Chennai and climaxing at the world's largest cricket stadium in Ahmedabad on May 30.

The Indian cricket board (BCCI), however, is bullish about the chances of pulling it off.

"We did it successfully in Dubai last year. We are confident we are going to do it again this time," BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly told the press.

Champions Mumbai Indians, captained by Rohit Sharma, and Virat Kohli's Royal Challengers Bangalore get the eight-team tournament going at M.A. Chidambaram Stadium on Friday.

Both teams have already been hit by Covid-19 cases in their camps, however, raising questions over the effectiveness of the health protections afforded to the cricketers by the bubble.

Players will be well compensated for their stint in India as, even without ticket sales, the IPL was still worth $6.19 billion last year, according to financial consultancy firm Duff & Phelps. That was down from $6.78 billion in 2019.

The BCCI would have been left with a $542 million hole in its coffers if it had cancelled its flagship event last year but ended up with record TV and digital viewership.

With curfews currently in force in many Indian states, the IPL can be expected to surpass last year's viewership numbers with cricket fans in the world's second most populous nation set to be glued to TV sets and electronic devices.

Bhairav Shanth, the managing director of global sport consulting firm ITW, said interest among advertisers has been high this year and predicted a windfall for broadcasters because of the "tremendous" pull of the IPL.

"For a tournament that is having another edition barely six months removed from the last one, the appetite has been fantastic," Shanth told Reuters. "In 2020, there was a slight dip in deal volume and sizes.

"But now as we see this edition occupy the prime summer slot with nothing else significant on TV to compete against, we have already seen new partners come on board in the league at a premium of 30-40 per cent from what it was last year."

Even the recent spike in the number of Covid-19 cases has not deterred the cream of world cricket from heading to India, where the T20 World Cup will also be held later this year.

Rajasthan Royals all-rounder Ben Stokes has been delighted to see so many of his England colleagues plying their trade in recent editions of the IPL.

"Being constantly exposed to that is a huge benefit to us as a team, especially with the T20 World Cup coming up at the end of the year in India," he told Sky Sports.

"It's a great chance for the English guys to get more experience in these conditions." 

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April 14,2021

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Davangere, Apr 14: In what could have been a major tragedy, a car in which Mangaluru Congress MLA and former minister U T Khader was traveling, involved in an accident in Davanagere district today morning. 

Even though the front portion of the car was damaged in the accident Mr Khader and other occupants escaped with minor injuries. 

Mr Khader was on his way from Bengaluru to Belgavi to campaign for the party’s candidate for the Belgavi by-elections. 

At around 8:45 a.m., when the MLA’s car reached Olal Cross on the National Highway, a container truck which was moving in front of the car, stopped suddenly, resulting in collision. 

S P Hanumantharaya visited the accident spot. Reportedly, Mr Khader suffered minor injuries on his face and leg and he was taken to a family doctor in Bengaluru in another car.

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News Network
April 8,2021

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Bengaluru, Apr 8: The second day of the strike by state road transport corporation (RTC) employees left commuters in the lurch on Thursday even as the management of the road transport corporations began issuing notices over the unauthorised absence of workers.

However, in a positive sign, about 100 RTC buses were operated by regular crew members. Accordingly, 54 buses of NEKRTC, 38 buses of KSRTC, 28 of BMTC and 14 of NEKRTC were operated by the regular crew. About 300 employees, mostly trainees, have been attending work for fear of disciplinary action. While these employees can't fill in for the 1.3 lakh on strike, officials expect more to return to work.

The private buses and maxi cabs deployed as an alternative to BMTC saw a larger number of riders compared to the poor response on Wednesday while the Namma Metro stations witnessed more passengers during the peak hours in the morning.

KSRTC Managing Director Shivayogi C Kalasad said at least 500 buses will cater to the needs of the interstate passengers. These buses, both from corporations and private players in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, will help the commuters during the festive rush. The bus connectivity with Kerala and Maharashtra will continue to be affected due to Covid-19 restrictions.

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