Kevin Pietersen: The IPL should be hosted in the UK this summer
The Betway ambassador backs the decision to postpone the IPL and says that there is a perfect opportunity for it to be completed in the UK in September.
Unfortunate but necessary to postpone the IPL
Unfortunately, the BCCI had no option but to postpone the IPL after the bubbles burst and players and coaches were becoming infected.
I definitely bought into the fact that continuing the tournament initially was a positive thing for India. The country is not in a good way but I felt that providing six hours of entertainment each day was certainly a positive thing.
We were doing a job for all of India, creating a show to give people some relief. I thought that the package the players were delivering was fantastic.
Yes, the wickets were a little slow, certainly in Chennai, but the cricket was still very good.
Don’t forget that the players and broadcasters are not blind to what was going on in India. There was an awful lot of empathy and desire to help in any way we could, which is why we were so keen to put on the show.
But once players tested positive then there was going to be an awful lot of pressure on the BCCI to postpone the tournament and I do believe that they had little choice.
The rest of the IPL should be held in England this summer
I have seen people talking about the UAE as a possible destination to finish the IPL in September but I actually think that the IPL should move to the UK.
There is a window in September after the England v India Test series has finished. All the best Indian players would already be there and all of the best English players would be available as well.
Mid-to-late September is the most beautiful time in the UK. They could use Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham and the two London grounds.
I have played internationals against India – one in particular in a World T20 against India at Lord’s – when it has felt like an away game because of how well Indian cricket is supported in the UK.
Sadiq Khan has spoken about wanting to bring the IPL to London and Surrey were agreeing with it.
There is also a good chance that crowds will be allowed in the grounds and there will be great atmospheres.
The IPL has been to the UAE, it’s been to South Africa, and I think England would now be the perfect place to house the remaining fixtures.
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