June 10, 2020 / 5:21 PM / a month ago

ICC defers T20 World Cup decision to July

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - The International Cricket Council (ICC) deferred its decision on the fate of this year’s Twenty20 World Cup to next month, saying it would further explore contingency plans while also preparing to deliver the tournament in Australia.

Cricket Australia boss Kevin Roberts has downplayed the prospect of the tournament going ahead in 2020, saying the October-November schedule was under “very high risk” due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The situation surrounding the global pandemic is evolving rapidly and we want to give ourselves the best possible opportunity to make the right decision...” ICC chief executive Manu Sawhney said in a statement after the board meeting.

“The health and well-being of everyone involved is our priority and other considerations fall out from that.”

Although the ICC is also considering alternative options for next year’s women’s 50-overs World Cup in New Zealand, the prospect of that tournament going ahead as planned in February-March is significantly brighter.

New Zealanders on Tuesday celebrated their first day without coronavirus restrictions in three months.

“We will only get one chance to make this decision and it needs to be the right one,” Sawhney added.

Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; editing by Ed Osmond

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