Australian cricketers may have to forego their lucrative IPL contracts in the wake of fast-spreading novel coronavirus, the local media reported on Tuesday (17th March).
The IPL has been postponed till April 15 with India reporting more than 120 positive cases and three deaths.
Cricket Australia has not directed the players officially with its chief executive Kevin Roberts on Tuesday saying that players were individually contracted to their IPL teams and can make up their own minds to compete in the 2020 IPL or not.
"We can provide advice. We're conscious of the fact that Australian players are individually contracted to the IPL and the time will certainly come very soon where players are going to be really interested and leaning on our perspective as their leader... to advise them in that regard," Roberts said.
"And then there will also be a perspective from the BCCI and their IPL division within that and together with our players and the BCCI, I am sure players will reach the best possible decisions in uncertain circumstances."
The Australian newspaper reported that Cricket Australia is reviewing whether it should permit its players to participate in the IPL or The Hundred series in the UK. There are 17 Australian players contracted with different IPL franchisees.
The Australia report said that pacer Pat Cummins, former skipper Steve Smith, opener David Warner and all-rounder Glenn Maxwell could be asked to give up their rich contracts.
Cummins had become the highest paid overseas player in the history of the IPL with a contract worth USD 3.2 million with Kolkata Knight Riders.
Maxwell received a USD 2.2 million contract with Kings XI Punjab. Cricket Australia has declared NSW the champions after scrapping the Sheffield Shield final.
Cricket Australia planning to host T20 World Cup as per schedule
Cricket Australia is planning to host the men's T20 World Cup as per schedule in October despite the COVID-19 pandemic causing a collapse of sports events worldwide.
The novel coronavirus outbreak has shredded sports calendars worldwide, including international and domestic cricket.
"We're really hoping that all forms of sport can be played again in a few weeks or a few months' time," CA chief Roberts was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
"None of us are experts in this situation obviously, so our hope is that we're back in very much normal circumstances come October and November when the men's T20 World Cup is to be played."
The men's T20 World Cup is slated to begin with the pre-qualifiers from October 18-23 followed by the main 12-team competition from October 24.
The final will be played on November 15 at the MCG and CA is planning for a full house.
"And at this stage we're planning on November 15, to have a full house at the MCG to inspire the world through men's cricket as the women's cricketers did here just last week," Roberts said.
The coronavirus has claimed over 7,000 lives and infected close to 175,000 people world over.
The pandemic has caused a collapse of sports events worldwide in an year when several quadrennial events like the Olympics, Euro 2020 and Copa America are scheduled.
Last week, Australia's ODI series against New Zealand was called off after the first match, as was India's ODI series against South Africa. Both series were to be held without spectators before being scrapped.
England's tour of Sri Lanka was also cut short before the beginning of the two-match Test series while the upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), which was due to start on March 29, has been suspended till April 15.
As governments across the world are urging people to self-isolate, South Africa head coach Mark Boucher suggested cell phones should also be turned off for two weeks.
"The only thing missing in this global lockdown is cellphone use! What about turning that off for 2 weeks as well!? #bliss #naturesway #oldschool," Boucher tweeted.