Caribbean Premier League (CPL) Director of Operations, Michael Hall, has hailed the recently concluded edition of the tournament as a huge success, in light of the obstacles presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year’s staging, which had initially been in doubt due to the global coronavirus outbreak, was eventually staged in Trinidad and Tobago in a biosecure environment, without fans.  The Trinbago Knight Riders created history by being the first team to claim the title without losing a match.

Things, however, did not go off without a hitch.  Many spectators took issue with the standard of play at the low-scoring tournament, while many players struggled with the quarantine requirements and conditions of the heavily used pitches.  Hall, while accepting that there were challenges and admitting that he was eager to see things return to normal, believed things went reasonably well.

“I think by any measure, this year, the Caribbean Premier League was a resounding success for the simple reason that we were able to do what we did, stage the tournament successfully, have some decent cricket played despite the fact that a number of cricketers would have been rusty,” Hall told the Mason and Guest radio program.

 “To pull it together, to stage it, to have it successfully completed without anyone testing positive for the virus throughout that entire almost eight-week period, anyone that tries to tell me the Caribbean Premier League was not a success this year, I am having none of it,” he added.

Despite no fans being in the stadium, this season's CPL was the most viewed tournament in the history of the competition.

As the 2020 season of the CPL season bowled off today in Trinidad and Tobago, news has emerged that all 237 members of the league have returned to negative tests in the latest round of COVID-19 tests conducted on Sunday.

Caribbean Premier League (CPL) COO Michael Hall has revealed the competition’s delight at increased interest in viewership demand, despite the scaled down nature of this season’s tournament.

With the region and globe disrupted by the effects of the coronavirus this year’s edition of the tournament will be held in Trinidad and Tobago.  The event, which will get under way August 18, will be played in a bio secure environment and without fans, which Hall admits is a big challenge.

“We will be no different than any other sporting event that has taken place since the pandemic.  Is it going to be the same, ‘absolutely not’,” Hall told the Mason and Guest radio program.

The CPL has throughout the years being known for vociferous fans, which some speculate might affect the intensity level of the cricket played.

“I don’t know how much of a factor (no spectators) that is in players performances.  I’ve always heard that the really great athletes shut out the crowd and focus, so I don’t know. But are we going to miss the fans, absolutely there are the lifeblood of the tournament,” he added.

“We are still having the tournament though, fans or no fans.  I know for a fact based on feedback.  Based on feedback, these are things that we track, the anticipation for our global viewing audience has almost trebled.  There have been people reaching out to ask where we can watch it, saying we are dying to watch it and that is only good for the league.”

The CPL will be the first T20 tournament played since the start of the pandemic.

 

All 162 players, administrators and officials tested negative for the coronavirus Covid-19 after they arrived in Trinidad and Tobago for the 2020 season of the Hero CPL.

Top-rated cricketers taking part in this season’s Caribbean Premier League (CPL) are expected to suffer a 30 percent pay cut as a scaled-down version of the tournament is expected to be confirmed for Trinidad and Tobago in a week’s time.

According to the latest information players earning between US$21,000 and US$112,000 will receive a salary 30 percent lower, when compared to last season.  Players in the US$20,000 bracket will receive a 10 percent pay cut with no salary cut for players below that bracket.

The entire tournament is expected to take place in Trinidad and Tobago, with players staying in the tournament hotel under conditions overseen by a medical advisory committee and matches played in empty stadiums.

CPL Operations manager Michael Hall claimed the devastation caused by the spread of the coronavirus had made the idea to stage the tournament a trick decision.  But felt it was important to send a message that the region is ready to do business again.

 "Should the tournament take place it will take place entirely in Trinidad & Tobago, which is the most successful country in the Caribbean in controlling the spread of the virus - recording just one new case since April 30 and just 117 total cases overall," Hall, the CPL wrote in an update sent to various stakeholders, quoted by ESPNcricinfo.

"One of the consequences the Covid-19 pandemic will have is that the CPL will be played behind closed doors in 2020. We were therefore faced with the very difficult decision of whether to play the tournament at all,” he added.

"[But] we also felt strongly that it is important for cricket to be seen to be getting underway again as well as to show the world that the Caribbean is open for business.”

Hall added that the executive expected to get approval from the Trinidad and Tobago government next week.  The tournament will be held from August 1 to September 12, with the first matches on August 18 and the final on September 10.

The Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) will once again work with Cricket West Indies (CWI) to ensure that the best young players from across the region will be in CPL squads during the tournament, as well as ensuring that these talented youngsters will be given game time.

CPL Cricket Operations Director Michael Hall talks about the wide-ranging economic impact of the Caribbean Premier League.

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