No India-South Africa series bio-bubbles, says Jay Shah | Cricket News

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AHMEDABAD: BCCI will not conduct the next T20I series between India and South Africa in a bio-bubble. “If I’m not mistaken, the bio-bubble for IPL-2022 was the last one. From the India-SA series, players will be tested (for covid), but will not be bio-bubbled,” BCCI Secretary Jay Shah told TOI in an exclusive interview here on Friday.

Since Covid-19 hit, cricketers have been forced to play sports in strict bio-bubbles which has caused mental fatigue leading many to withdraw from touring and playing. key games. However, Shah says that with their families staying with them in the bubbles, the players also enjoyed being there. “Yes, it’s hard for the players. However, they got a family atmosphere inside the hotel bio-bubble. In the case of the IPL, we had dedicated hotels for each team. The whole tournament took place in the same place. All the teams had their lounges, recreation centers (to unwind and relax). So they also appreciated,” the BCCI secretary said.

Did he get worried when Delhi Capitals camp was hit with multiple covid cases during IPL-15? “My reaction was ‘we have to move on.’ For us the safety and security of the players is paramount but we still decided to move on We have moved the DC game from Pune to Mumbai We have treated all stricken players/support staff properly by covid. We continued to perform RT-PCR tests daily for DC members. Luckily, all DC members were fine later,” Shah said. Did BCCI have a plan B ready at this time? “No, it didn’t occur to us because the covid outbreak was only affecting one team,” he said.

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Shah praised Mumbai and Maharashtra Cricket Associations for helping BCCI stage 70 matches – the entire league phase of IPL-15, successfully. “We would like to thank them for helping us. If we had conducted the IPL all over India and there was a covid outbreak, then everyone would have suffered – players and BCCI would have suffered financial loss. We organized it in Mumbai and Pune as we could eliminate air travel for the teams. Ground transportation was enough,” Shah explained.

After conducting three IPLs during the pandemic, BCCI deserves praise, Shah said. “We were among the first cricket councils to organize a national league (during covid, in 2020 in the United Arab Emirates). We have created the largest bio-bubble in the world. When IPL-2020 started, there was not a single case of covid. We conducted over 30,000 covid tests during this tournament. We also have to thank the UAE government for granting visas on arrival and providing tight security. In 2021, we tried to organize the IPL in India, but the moment there was an outbreak of covid in the teams, we immediately postponed the IPL and moved it to the United Arab Emirates”, Shah explained.

On Saturday, a few ICC officials visited Narendra Modi Stadium here. “They visited the stadium with me. They were fascinated and happy to see him. We had lunch together at the stadium. It would be better if you ask them,” Shah said.

As a Gujarati, Shah must feel deeply satisfied that Gujarat Titans are in the IPL finals, but his position does not allow him to show emotions. “As secretary of the BCCI, I have to be fair. I support both teams. Let’s see, whoever plays well will win the tournament,” he said.

The closing ceremony promises to be a great show. “We gave the offer to the company that offered the lowest price. AR Rahman (Renowned Musician) will perform as part of India’s Memorable Victories while Ranveer Singh (Bollywood Actor) will perform on a theme about individuals from various parts of India,” he said. declared.

Describing how the idea to rebuild Motera into the current 1,32,000 capacity Narendra Modi Stadium came about, Shah said: “The idea (to rebuild Motera) was given by Prime Minister (Narandra Modi) and the Minister of Interior (Amit Shah). They gave us the strength to do it. L&T won the tender to build the stadium and it took three years to rebuild. There are 81 (corporate boxes) in the stadium – 75 on one side and six on the other. The stadium is equipped with LED lights (it is the first sports stadium in India that features the unique ring lighting arrangement of LED lights installed on the stadium catwalk) which cuts the shade, with a power of 3000lux. One of the main features of this stadium is that it has a complex that has a facility for around 40 sports. The stadium also has a clubhouse. The government plans to turn it into a large sports complex. In the future, this complex will also be able to host the Olympic Games or the Asian Games. Olympics and Asiad? “If we can organize the IPL final, we can organize everything,” he said wryly!

“For us (Gujarat) to host the IPL final is a great pride. Although I am the secretary of BCCI, we are grateful to the board for giving this opportunity to Ahmedabad. ‘ve not been able to hold a closing ceremony for the past three years, but now that government guidelines permit, we have decided to hold one. Most importantly, the closing ceremony will mark 75 years of independence of India – the theme will be on Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsva, as per the Prime Minister’s wishes,” Shah said.

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