Host boards receive a fee from the ICC to stage the tournament, but ordinarily stand to make more money through ticket sales.
The event could be moved to next February, as reported by The Sun-Herald last month, but consideration is also being given to staging the tournament in the back half of next year. That, however, would have implications for the 2021 men’s T20 World Cup, to be staged in India in October and November.
Organisers will get a better indication in the coming days from international broadcasters as to their preference for when the tournament should be held.
The AFL will be closely monitoring developments given the potentially major implications on its finals series, set to be held in October.
Under the ICC’s agreement with venues, there is an exclusivity period of about three weeks to enable grounds to prepare for international cricket. This means football would lose access to the MCG, SCG, Gabba, Adelaide Oval and Optus Stadium from early October.
Moving the 29-day event from October-November would leave the ideal window for the IPL, which was forced from its usual April-May dates due to COVID-19.
The two-month long IPL is worth much more to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), generating a reported $512 million a year compared to the $80m it receives annually from the ICC.
“If IPL has to happen, there has to be a clear-cut window of 30 to 40 days,” BCCI treasurer Arun Dhumal told Reuters.
“If [the] T20 World Cup does not happen, and there’s a window available, then it would be worked out, subject to restrictions of course.”
A week after Dhumal told the Herald he believed it would be “difficult” to stage the World Cup in October, India coach Ravi Shastri said the IPL and bilateral tours should be prioritised.
“I wouldn’t put too much emphasis on world events right now,” Shastri told the Times of India.
“Stay at home, ensure domestic cricket comes back to normal, cricketers at all levels international, first class, etc all get back on the field. That’s the most important bit. Second, start with bilateral cricket.
“When cricket resumes, we could give the IPL a priority. The difference between an international tournament and the IPL is that the IPL can be played between one or two cities and the logistics will be easier to manage.
“The same thing with bilaterals, it’ll be easier for us to tour one country and play there at specific grounds than 15 to 16 teams flying in during these times. The International Cricket Council needs to look at this objectively.”
Andrew Wu writes on cricket and AFL for The Sydney Morning Herald