Australian giant Ian Chappell’s IPL suspension is a reminder of cricket’s vulnerability and did not force the Kovid-19 epidemic to postpone or change the upcoming T20 World Cup from India.
The 2021 edition of the lucrative T20 league was halted earlier this week after Sunrisers Hyderabad batsman Wriddhiman Saha, Delhi Capitals spinner Amit Mishra and KKR’s Varun Chakraborty and Sandeep Warrior tested positive for Kovid-19 in the bio-bubble.
“The suspension of the 2021 IPL tournament has led to an increase in Kovid infections and deaths among the public and many participants who have tested positively are reminded of the fragility of the game,” Chappell wrote for ‘ESPNcricinfo’ in his column.
India, which is battling the devastating second wave of the epidemic with more than 4 lakh cases rising every day, is set to host the T20 World Cup in October-November.
“In the current catastrophic environment, the suspension of the IPL could also set an example.
Chappell recalled some incidents that had interrupted the game in the past.
“In the past, tours were canceled and matches were abandoned for various reasons. Many of these have back stories, some of which are tragic and some of which are amusing.”
The 77-year-old recalls how the weather at the 1970-71 Boxing Day Test between hosts Australia and England led to the first ODI International.
“The MCG Boxing Day Test between Australia and England in 1970-71 was canceled due to heavy rain, which ruined the chances of a competitive match.
“The attempt to regain some of the lost revenue led to the first ODI being played instead of the Test. The match between the two countries’ officials was accepted without consulting the players and it angered many in the England camp.
“This is another arrow in the players’ trembling in the revolutionary structure of the World Series of Cricket (WSC) in 1977-78.
The former Australia captain wrote about the time in 2006 when Pakistani players lost a Test to England over allegations of ball tampering.
“The fourth Test between England and Pakistan in 2006 came to an untimely end. Pakistan lost the match when they refused to take the field after being accused of ball tampering and fined five runs.
“Although cricket employs more sheriffs than you find in the old American Wild West, Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq failed to bring his team back to the field. England lost the match after a long delay.
“In an attempt to humiliate the compromise, the ICC subsequently declared the match a draw in 2008.
“However, when the decision was finally overturned in 2009 as per the MCC directives, integrity finally prevailed, and it is quite right that non-compliance with the law stands as a dangerous example,” Chappell said.