T20 World Cup contingency plans and COVID-19 impact top ICC agenda

The International Cricket Council (ICC) will on Thursday review contingency plans for this year’s men’s Twenty20 World Cup in Australia and discuss ways to re-start the sport once the COVID-19 pandemic subsides, the governing body said on Monday.

The global health crisis, which has forced travel and other restrictions in several countries, has halted professional cricket and jeopardises Twenty20 cricket’s flagship event scheduled to begin on Oct. 18 in Geelong.

Announcing its Chief Executives’ Committee (CEC) meeting, the ICC said in a statement, “They will… receive an update on the continuing contingency planning for all ICC global events, including the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2020”.

The novel coronavirus pandemic has wiped out several bilateral series, which has affected the World Test Championship (WTC), while the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) has been postponed indefinitely.

In Thursday’s conference call, the governing body would like to understand from its members when cricket might re-start and under what conditions.

“The purpose of the meeting is to gain a full understanding of Member priorities during this time and to discuss and share the key mitigation factors required to resume international cricket based on government advice in each territory,” the ICC said.

The governing body’s chief executive Manu Sawhney added: “We need to share knowledge and start to build a deep understanding of what it will take to resume international cricket.

“Countries will start to reopen at different stages and in different ways and we will need to respect that…

“In relation to ICC events, including the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, we will continue to take advice from experts and authorities, including the Australian government.”

Any decision on the fate of the tournament would be taken at an “appropriate time”, it added.

Left with a scheduling headache following the postponement of events, the CEC will discuss ways to reschedule them and review the calendar through to 2023.

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