World India's IPL cricket suspended over coronavirus
'Crass commercialism': Virus crisis sparks India newspaper IPL ban
A leading Indian newspaper group suspended coverage of the Indian Premier League on Sunday, calling the glitzy cricket tournament "commercialism gone crass" and "incongruous" as a record-breaking pandemic surge grips the country. Express Publications said in a front-page editorial of its flagship English-language daily, the New Indian Express, that the paper was halting reporting on the Twenty20 event until a "semblance of normalcy is restored".Express Publications said in a front-page editorial of its flagship English-language daily, the New Indian Express, that the paper was halting reporting on the Twenty20 event until a "semblance of normalcy is restored".
The Indian Premier League, the world's richest Twenty20 cricket tournament, was suspended on Tuesday and its players sent home as India battles a massive surge in coronavirus cases.
The move, which follows growing controversy over the competition, comes a day after two players -- Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier -- tested positive, forcing a match to be postponed.
"The Indian Premier League Governing Council and Board of Control for Cricket in India in an emergency meeting has unanimously decided to postpone (the) IPL 2021 season, with immediate effect," a statement from organisers said.
IPL: Australian cricketers wear full PPE on flight to Delhi; Aussie PM tells IPL stars to make 'own arrangements' to return home
As the debate intensifies as to whether the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) tournament should play on amid a deadly Covid-19 second wave, Australian international David Warner was adhering to strict safety protocols as he took an internal flight in the country for a match. © from cricketcomau A photo of Warner and Williamson on a flight wearing full PPE. The 34-year-old posted on social media a photo of himself and his teammate Kane Williamson head-to-toe in full personal protective equipment, including a mask, visor and a full protective body suit, as they flew to Delhi for the Sunrisers Hyderabad's next match.
"The BCCI does not want to compromise on the safety of the players, support staff and the other participants involved in organising the IPL," it added.
India, which has reported more than 20 million cases so far, with just over 222,000 deaths, is also due to host the Twenty20 World Cup in October and November.
The high-paying IPL, which was taking place in biosecure "bubble" conditions, attracts many of the world's top cricketers, including players from Australia, England and South Africa.
BCCI Vice-President Rajiv Shukla to AFP that the governing body would "make the arrangements" for the IPL's international players to leave India.
"About the foreign players, as we have said, we will try and ensure all of them get to their homes," he said.
Police protect empty stadium as IPL arrives in India's virus-hit capital
Chennai Super Kings beat bottom side Sunrisers Hyderabad to go top of the IPL on Wednesday as the big-money tournament staged its first game in India's coronavirus stricken capital. The IPL bubbles will remain tightly sealed around the players for the rest of the tournament which ends on May 30. Inside the empty stadium, Australia's David Warner went past 10,000 Twenty20 runs with his 57 for the Sunrisers.Manish Pandey hit 61 and Kane Williamson and Kedhar Jadhav added 33 in the final 12 balls to boost the Hyderabad total.Chennai were always ahead of the target however.
The IPL has been running since early April, even as India's health care system has been overwhelmed by a vicious second wave of virus cases.
This prompted criticism from some who said it was inappropriate, given the suffering in the country, while others defended it as a welcome distraction.
Eight teams have been playing behind closed doors in six cities including New Delhi and Mumbai, both badly hit by the pandemic.
"These are difficult times, especially in India and while we have tried to bring in some positivity and cheer, however, it is imperative that the tournament is now suspended and everyone goes back to their families and loved ones in these trying times," the statement said.
"The BCCI will do everything in its powers to arrange for the secure and safe passage of all the participants in IPL 2021."
Australian players Adam Zampa, Andrew Tye and Kane Richardson had already left their IPL teams before their country imposed a ban on arrivals from India.
The Australian Cricket Board has said it is in daily contact with the remaining Australian players.
The English Cricket Board has also said it was talking with staff and players in India.
The huge surge in cases has overwhelmed hospitals in major cities and led to severe shortages of oxygen, beds and critical medical supplies.
IPL: Australian cricketers scramble to leave India amid Covid-19 crisis .
Australian and other overseas cricketers who have been participating in the Indian Premier League (IPL) are scrambling for ways to leave India as it faces the world's worst Covid-19 outbreak.The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) will help move Australia's entire IPL "cohort" to the Maldives or Sri Lanka ahead of the weekend, Cricket Australia (CA) announced on Wednesday.