TNPL 2020 postponed due to coronavirus pandemic

The fifth edition of the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL), which was scheduled to start from June 10, has been postponed.

The TNPL has grown in popularity and stature across the districts of Tamil Nadu over the past four years.   -  G. Karthikeyan

The Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL) has been postponed. TNCA secretary R.S. Ramasaamy, however, said on Monday that the TNCA was exploring other dates.

“The TNPL was slated to begin on June 10. But after lockdown 4, we can have a meeting only on June 1. Then to start the tournament in 10 days is impossible,” Ramasaamy told Sportstar.

However, he was confident that the TNPL will be held this season. The challenge will be to conclude the tournament by the third week of August because there are indications that the Indian Premier League (IPL) could be held in September.

READ: TNCA secretary confident of TNPL going ahead

Ramasaamy said: “We have two other windows before September. One of the options is to start TNPL on July 15 and end it by the middle of August. Or we could begin on August 1 and finish it in about 20 days so that there is a gap between TNPL and the IPL.”

Importantly, Ramasaamy added that the TNCA would have talks with all the stake-holders including the franchise owners, the broadcasters, the local organisers and the other relevant authorities in a couple of days.

There will be no TNPL games in Chennai this season. In fact, the TNCA has added Salem and Coimbatore as the two new venues for this season’s edition of the league.

READ: India allows opening of stadiums without spectators

“We will be having matches at Salem, Coimbatore, Natham and Tirunelveli. The reassuring factor is that all these four centres are in the green zone. That makes our job easier,” Ramasaamy said.

He added, “We will need about a month to get the grounds and the floodlights ready. We are confident. Our organisational capacity is excellent.”

Sadly, the crowds will be missing. The TNCA secretary said, “Almost 99 per cent, we will be having the matches before empty stadiums. It’s a pity but cannot be helped under the circumstances. However, journalists, broadcasting crew, officials and the local organisers will be allowed into the stadium.”

Ramasaamy felt that the broadcaster, Star India, would not have any problems with the dates as long as there is a reasonable gap between the TNPL and IPL.

“People are cricket starved. Lots of viewers would watch TNPL. The TRP will be high.”

Despite the setback of having to postpone TNPL, the TNCA is upbeat about staging the competition before September.

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