T20 World Cup could be moved to early 2021, says Brendon McCullum
Former New Zealand captain believes IPL could be rescheduled for late 2020
Last Updated: 22/04/20 2:10pm
Former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum believes this year's T20 World Cup could be pushed back into early 2021 with a rescheduled IPL taking its autumn slot.
The T20 World Cup is due to take place in Australia in October and November but that could be affected by the coronavirus pandemic, with ICC officials meeting via video conference on Thursday to discuss the upcoming international calendar.
The IPL, initially due to start in late March, has been 'suspended indefinitely' but McCullum feels that competition could take the hit of having no fans in stadiums better than the T20 World Cup.
"As a punter, if I were to put my final dollar on what the schedule would look like, it would be that the T20 World Cup has got to be at risk," said the ex-Black Caps captain on a Sky Cricket Podcast, which you can listen to on Apple, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.
"For Australia to move 16 international teams plus all of their support staff and then broadcasters, seems a bridge too far. I can't see them playing the T20 World Cup behind closed doors either.
"There may be a window a bit later in the new year of 2021 which could then open up a window for the IPL [in October and November].
"You'd have to move some overseas players for the IPL but with the broadcasters based in India, it is a lot easier to pull it all together.
"The ICC and world cricket need crowds to operate but India can probably sustain things commercially behind closed doors because they are going to get so many eyeballs.
"I think the IPL will try and target that October window and the T20 World Cup will get pushed back.
"That may mean the Women's World Cup [set for New Zealand in early 2021] gets pushed back but hopefully we get to see all three tournaments operate."
Former New Zealand seamer Simon Doull, who joined McCullum and Ian Smith on the Sky Sports Cricket Podcast, does not believe the ICC will want a T20 World Cup behind closed doors.
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"A lot of the ICC's revenue for down the track comes from the World Cups so they want as many people in the stands as possible," he said.
"They would hate to see a T20 World Cup under lockdown where no one could go and watch and the atmosphere would probably be a little bit less.
"How important is the T20 World Cup? That the first question from an ICC point of view.
"Is it important enough to have private jets out of each county with cricket teams on them, two weeks in quarantine in Australia and then the tournament taking place, whether there are fans in the stands or not? Is it that important?