This year’s Women’s T20 Challenge – the three-team women’s exhibition tournament played alongside the Indian Premier League, is likely to be postponed in the wake of the record coronavirus upsurge in India.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India is looking to delay the fourth edition due to the potential unavailability of overseas players given the international travel restrictions, reported ESPNCricinfo.

The 2021 edition of the event was yet to be officially announced but the previous editions have taken place during the IPL Playoffs, which are scheduled to be held towards the end of May this year.

However, a dangerous second wave of Covid-19 has swept India and the country is recording over 3 lakh daily cases for the past few days, leaving the health infrastructure in shambles. Australia on Tuesday suspended all direct passenger flights from India until May 15 due to the “very significant” spike. Three Australian players have also left the tournament midway.

It was earlier reported by PTI that the event was to continue with three teams and not be expanded further for now.

“As of now, the plan is to have three teams. A final decision will be taken shortly. There is a good chance that it will be held in Delhi. Talks are on with the leading Australian and England players,” a BCCI official told PTI earlier this month.

It was also that the BCCI planned to increase the exhibition event to four teams last year but it will continue to be a three-team affair due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The last edition, comprising four games, was held in Sharjah as the IPL playoffs took place in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The teams were led by Mithali Raj (Velocity), Harmanpreet Kaur (Supernovas), Smriti Mandhana (Trailblazers). The 2019 edition was held in Jaipur while it was a one-off match in 2018.

With PTI Inputs