New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: Ahead of the start of the cash-rich Indian T20 league, former India captain and current BCCI president Sourav Ganguly on Wednesday left for Dubai to oversee the preparations for the tournament.

"My first flight in 6 months to Dubai for IPL...crazy life changes," Ganguly posted on his Instagram handle with a picture in which he is wearing a mask and face shield, part of the Standard Operating Procedure while flying amid the pandemic.

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My first charter flight in 6months to dubai for IPL.. crazy life changes ..

A post shared by SOURAV GANGULY (@souravganguly) onSep 8, 2020 at 8:09pm PDT

(Official Instagram Handle of Sourav Ganguly)

The thirteenth season of the Indian T20 league will commence from September 19, 2020. Defending champions Mumbai will lock horns with Chennai in the opening fixture of the tournament which has been moved to the UAE due to the rising COVID-19 cases in India. 

The BCCI was able to create a window for the IPL following the postponement of the T20 World Cup in Australia, scheduled for October-November. The Board would have faced a revenue loss of Rs 4000 crore if the tournament, which usually takes place in April-May, had not got the go-ahead. IPL chairman Brijesh Patel is among the other key officials who are already in Dubai.

However, despite the bio-secure bubble and strict health and safety measures in place, the tournament has already endured instances of contingent members testing positive for the dreaded virus.

Thirteen members including two players of the Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led Chennai had already tested positive for the coronavirus and are currently in 14-day quarantine and will only return to the team after testing negative twice.  

The cash-rich league will be played without fans cheering for their favourite franchise, however, a report suggests that some crowd might be approved in the later stages of the tournament after a review of the COVID-19 situation. The event will be played at three venues -- Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi.

Posted By: Talib Khan