The Under-16 Vijay Merchant Trophy has been postponed following the fresh surge in Covid-19 cases and the growing threat of the Omicron variant in the country, ESPNcricinfo reported on Thursday (December 30).
The tournament was set to commence in January 2022, but in a letter to the affiliated units of BCCI, secretary Jay Shah said that "the participants are still not vaccinated and as such, are vulnerable".
"We have been closely monitoring the situation in lndia and across the world, and it is estimated that the caseload will shoot up in the immediate future if the situation is not controlled now," Shah said in the letter.
"After consulting experts and seeking views of the medical teams and operations team, it has been decided that keeping health and safety in mind, the U16 Vijay Merchant Trophy is postponed for this season. We must exercise caution and not be adventurous and put the health of our talented cricketers at grave risk.
"Ahead of the domestic season, we had said that will endeavor to have a full season across age groups. We started off well and are now mid-way into the season having completed 748 matches when we have again encountered a serious issue, The cases across lndia are spiraling and despite being a large number of adults doubly vaccinated, they have still been infected."
The competition was scheduled to be played in Agartala and Guwahati from January 9 to 21.