Bengal and Sunrisers Hyderabad wicketkeeper-batsman Shreevats Goswami had four to five training sessions at the Laxmi Ratan Shukla sports academy's outdoor nets, close to his home, in Kolkata recently. Like every player, he is looking forward to the Indian Premier League but admits that adhering to the bio-bubble protocol for three months will be a challenge.

No person can go in and out of the bio-secure environment during the competition.

“If the restrictions are eased midway through the tournament, then it's fine otherwise being confined in a bio-bubble for that long will be very difficult, especially if your family isn't travelling with you.

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“After all, how much TV can a person watch? Commuting to and fro from the stadiums without another distraction will become mundane after a certain point. That said, given the gravity of the situation, we've to take every precaution to mitigate risks during the pandemic. I'm sure the franchises will think of ways to keep everyone occupied and entertained,” Goswami told Sportstar on Thursday.

Sunrisers is likely to leave for the United Arab Emirates on August 23 to give itself at least three weeks to train before the IPL begins from September 19. "The players have been asked to report to Mumbai on August 19, following which we will leave for Dubai via a charter flight. If we get there on the 23rd, then it'll be 79 days [till the end of IPL on November 10] on the road for us," he said.

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The players and support staff will need to clear at least two COVID-19 tests before leaving for the UAE.

Season preparation not a problem

Goswami also thinks the IPL 2020 will not hamper domestic teams' preparations for the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 trophy, which is scheduled to start on November 19.

"No doubt it is not ideal to have the top players away playing the IPL in the lead up to the domestic competitions. However, the season is always planned in such a way that at times, a player playing the Duleep Trophy comes straight into the first game of the Ranji Trophy.  There are also guys who feature in India A matches before joining their respective state sides. So, teams are used to it by now," he said.