The seventh edition of the Indian Premier League is likely to be divided into two halves, one in India and the other abroad. The Board of Control for Cricket in India is reportedly mulling over the possibility of holding one part of IPL 7 in another country as the league is likely to clash with the general elections scheduled for this year.
"Keeping security concerns in mind, IPL may be hosted in two parts. But it is not yet decided which part will be played in the country. A final decision will be taken only after the election dates are announced," a BCCI source was quoted as saying by Times of India. The elections are likely to be held in April-May this year.
Neighbours Sri Lanka and South Africa are the two options for hosting the T20 league. The African nation hosted the tournament in 2009 after the central government refused to provide security during the general elections that year. "We will get to know after three weeks which country will host the tournament, if some matches have to be played outside India," the source added.
Sri Lanka, on the other hand, may get to host IPL matches and the upcoming Asia Cup. Recent political violence in hosts Bangladesh has meant that the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) may shift the four-nation tournament, scheduled to begin on February 24.
Meanwhile, the IPL 7 auction will be held on February 12-13 at an undecided venue. Teams can retain up to five capped players in advance with the option of retaining a sixth via a joker's card concept. According to the regulations released by the IPL Governing Council, each squad must include no less than 16 and no more than 27 players, of which nine may be foreigners. (Blog: New rules defeat purpose of IPL reshuffle)