While there are more cons than pros of the IPL 2020 being scheduled in the UAE, Delhi Capitals assistant coach Mohammad Kaif feels the players will recover faster between matches due to them having to travel lesser.

While the IPL in India comes with frequent flying and change of hotels, IPL 2020 will be held across three stadiums – Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah, all of which are located close to each other.

“A major difference between the previous editions of IPL in India is that we will not be travelling a lot. In India, you are always travelling across the country, waiting at the airports, hotels etc…while here the grounds are not very far and the players are coming back to the same hotel. I feel the recovery for the next game will be faster,” Kaif told a virtual media conference.

Apart from fitness drills at home, the IPL-bound players have not gotten on-field practice for the last five months. While it might be a bit difficult for them initially, Kaif feels the players will soon get back into the groove. However, he opined that their reflexes might have been affected during the lockdown.

“Yes, the quality of reflexes may have suffered a bit for the players during this lockdown and it’s going to make a big difference, at least in the initial stages of the tournament,” Kaif said.

Contingent of all IPL teams will be closely monitored

IPL Eliminator - Delhi v Sunrisers
IPL Eliminator – Delhi v Sunrisers

While the Kolkata Knight Riders and defending champions Mumbai Indians have set up their bases in Abu Dhabi, the other six IPL franchises have been put up in Dubai.

As per the protocols put forth by the stakeholders, all players and support staff had to undergo a COVID-19 test upon landing, which was to be followed by a six-day quarantine period.

Everyone had to return negative on days 1, 3 and 5 in order to join their respective team’s bio-bubbles. The movements of everyone in the bubble will be tracked with a band, which will send out notifications if they come within six feet of anyone. Players have to wear the band at all times, except for when they are on the field.

Published 28 Aug 2020, 18:44 IST

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