BCCI President Sourav Ganguly and BCCI Secretary Jai Shah arrive at the BCCI headquarters for a meeting with IPL franchise owners in Mumbai
BCCI President Sourav Ganguly and BCCI Secretary Jai Shah arrive at the BCCI headquarters for a meeting with IPL franchise owners in Mumbai
PTI Photo

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought cricket to its knees with scores of events being either called off or indefinitely postponed.

SHUTTERS DOWN

On Tuesday, India's biggest sports body BCCI to virtuonally shut down its headquarter in Mumbai from Tuesday with its employees being advised to work from home.

It has been learnt that the employees have been asked to "work from home" with all the cricketing operations already being suspended till further notice.

"The BCCI employees were today notified that the headquarters at the Wankhede Stadium will be as good as closed in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic. All the staffers have been advised to work from home," a top source from the Board told PTI on the condition of anonymity.

"However, if someone still wants to come, they can," he added.

The BCCI last Friday postponed the IPL-13 from March 29 to April 15 along with all other domestic tournaments, including the Irani Cup and the Women's Challenger Trophy.

In India as well as across the globe, more and more companies are encouraging their employees to work from home in these critical times and no wonder, the BCCI is also going the same way.

It has been also learnt that the National Cricket Academy (NCA) has stopped its various zonal camps even though rehabilitation programmes at the Bengaluru centre was still on as on Monday.

Furthermore, the outbreak of virus in Maharashtra has led to Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) keeping its offices closed till March 21.

"The office of the Association will remain closed from Tuesday, March 17 to Saturday, March 21 as a precautionary measure against the ongoing coronavirus outbreak," MCA Chief Executive Officer CS Naik said in a media release.

MCA last Saturday suspended local tournaments in view of the outbreak.

EMPTY NETS

Eight Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises have called off their respective pre-tournament camps till further notice, three days after the COVID-19 pandemic forced a suspension of the cash-rich event from March 29 to April 15.

Royal Challengers Bangalore on Monday deferred their training camp, which was scheduled to begin on March 21, due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in the country.

Three-time champions Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings as well as Kolkata Knight Riders have already cancelled their camps.

"Keeping in mind the health and safety of everyone involved, the RCB Training Camp scheduled to start on the 21st of March has been deferred until further notice. We request everyone to follow the guidelines provided by the Health Ministry and stay safe," RCB tweeted.

The RCB outfit is led by Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli.

While CSK tweeted: “Play while you play, work while you work, safety over everything else. Take all precautions against COVID-19," Chennai's date with M.S. Dhoni was cut short as the captain left the base amid huge fanfare.

"It has become your home, sir!" Keep whistling, as #Thala Dhoni bids a short adieu to #AnbuDen," a tweet from CSK said with a short video of fans queuing up to get a glimpse of Dhoni as the former India captain bid adieu.

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