The Emirates Cricket Board said they would “be ready” to host the Indian Premier League if the BCCI decides to move the tournament to the UAE next year.
Earlier this week, reports in India claimed that the UAE remain frontrunners to host the world’s most high-profile T20 competition, should it be partially moved out of the country due to the upcoming general elections.
The UAE are no strangers to staging the IPL after the first 20 matches of the 2014 edition were held across the Emirates in front of big crowds.
And if the 2019 edition is switched to the Emirates, then the ECB insist they will be ready to welcome the world’s best.
“We hosted the Asia Cup and everyone knows our capability,” Zayed Abbas, ECB board member and official spokesperson, told Sport360. “If the BCCI decides to bring the IPL to the UAE, then of course we will be ready. Who wouldn’t wish to have the IPL played in the UAE? Everyone does and more so is the public.”
Abbas did not reveal if any discussions with the BCCI have been held. However, even if they do not stage next year’s extravagant event, the ECB “are proud” that the UAE have become the preferred venue for elite cricket.
Since last month, the UAE have hosted the Afghanistan Premier League, Asia Cup and Abu Dhabi T20, while the T10 League, UAE T20x and Pakistan Super League will be played over the next four months.
“It is something that we are proud,” added Abbas. “You will not be in a position to host such important international leagues like the T10, PSL and Afghanistan Premier League without strong support and facilities. These are because of the facilities we have, the whole structure and the outstanding efforts of the people to make this happen. The hotels, connectivity with airlines and all of this makes a huge difference and that is why we are a preferred venue for cricket tournaments.”