BCCI ACU head: Monitoring IPL will be easier in the UAE

Hosting the IPL in the UAE will make it easier for the BCCI anti-corruption unit to monitor it than if it were held in India, according to Ajit Singh.

The IPL will be held across three venues in the UAE 19 September onwards.   -  K. Bhagya Prakash

Hosting the Indian Premier League in the United Arab Emirates will make it easier for the BCCI anti-corruption unit to monitor the tournament than if it were held in India, according to anti-corruption unit head Ajit Singh.

The IPL is set to commence on 19 September and the final will be held on 8 November with three stadiums - Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi - hosting 60 games over 51 days.

“In the UAE, it will be slightly easier [to monitor the IPL] as there are only three grounds compared to eight venues in India. That’s not an issue at all. Once the schedule comes, we will decided the workforce,” Ajit told PTI.

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This is the second time IPL matches would be held in the UAE. In 2014, UAE hosted the first part of the IPL due to general elections in India.

Ajit said there were “eight ACU officers who are on BCCI payrolls.” Will that be enough in terms of managing the work through 60 matches as well as keeping a tab on hotels?

‘We first need to see how things are taking shape there and we will deploy our men accordingly.’

“It’s too early to comment on measures as we need to first check what kind of bio-security measures will be created. We first need to see how things are taking shape there and we will deploy our men accordingly,” Ajit said.

“In case, we need men, we will hire them,” he added.

With the ICC headquartered in Dubai, the BCCI can take its help. The ICC has a huge team of ACU officials who can be hired, according to a BCCI official. “If it is a private league that approaches ICC for hiring ACU officers and they agree to cover the event, then the league organisers bear the costs,” the senior official told PTI.

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The BCCI might need some more workforce considering that each team will have one dedicated ‘Integrity Officer’ as per the rules. “It is the BCCI that will designate one Integrity Officer per team during the course of the IPL. Now whether they will be a part of the bio-bubble (if created), we don’t know, but the Integrity Officer is completely their domain,” a senior franchise official clarified.

The UAE has a reputation of being a hotbed for bookies and fixers but Ajit is confident that intelligence gathering wouldn’t be hampered by shifting IPL to the UAE. “Whoever is involved (bookies/fixers) they are all inter-connected. If we have our sources here, they also know how these bookies operate. If they get an information of this place, they will get an information of that place also. It’s not so much of an issue,” he said.

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