Venues confirmed for IPL’s return home

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has confirmed the schedule for this year’s edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 tournament, which will return home after the 2020 competition was held in the United Arab Emirates.

Games will be played in Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata. The event will get underway on April 9 in Chennai.

Ahmedabad’s newly-named Narendra Modi Stadium (pictured), which has a capacity of 110,000, will host the play-offs, as well as the final on May 30. The stadium recently hosted India’s third and fourth Tests against England.

Each IPL team will play at four venues during the league stage, with all matches to be held at neutral venues in a change of format for the competition. Chennai, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bengaluru will each host 10 league matches, with Ahmedabad and Delhi to stage eight each.

Eleven double-headers will be held, with six teams to play three afternoon matches and two teams to play two afternoon matches. Each team will only travel three times during the league stage, which the BCCI hopes will reduce commuting and minimise the risk of spreading COVID-19.

The IPL will begin with games being played behind closed doors, with a call on potential fan attendance to be made at a later stage of the tournament.

Last year’s IPL was held in the United Arab Emirates from September to November due to the COVID-19 situation in India at the time. The tournament had originally been due to take place in India earlier in the year but the season was postponed due to the pandemic.

Image: Gujarat Cricket Association