CHENNAI: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is working on the logistics of assembling Indian players for the Women's T20 Challenge to be played in Sharjah from November 4-9.
Three teams will take part, with each facing the other once before the final. The BCCI has received confirmation that players from England, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and West Indies will be available.
Although the schedule is yet to be announced, it is understood that matches will mostly take place in Sharjah. Considering the hot and humid conditions, the board is thinking of having these matches from 7.30 pm. On the dates concerned, there are no IPL matches.
Unlike last season, the women's final will not take place on the same day as the men's final. It will be on November 9 since the BCCI believes this will afford better reach.
The BCCI is looking to assemble the three teams in Dubai by the third week of October, after which they will undergo six-day quarantine before practice.
This means the players will at best get a week to prepare.
Sources in BCCI indicate the teams will reach Dubai via chartered flights and all three teams will be put up in the same hotel. A set of standard operating procedures similar to the IPL is being prepared. The players will take three Covid-19 tests, on days one, three and five after landing in Dubai before being allowed to enter the bio-secure bubble.
It is still not clear where and how the players will assemble. For IPL, some franchises arranged chartered flights to take their players to a particular city, from where they flew out for the UAE. But whether that would be possible for the women's tournament remains to be seen.
With domestic air travel resuming across India, there are indications that players might be asked to take private carriers and assemble in either Mumbai or Bengaluru for a few days, where they undergo Covid-19 tests before leaving for Dubai.
There are concerns that taking players directly in a flight to Dubai after asking them to assemble in one city will be risky. There are talks of having them at National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru, where they will quarantine and take tests. But considering the rise in Covid-19 cases in the city, the BCCI is planning to keep Mumbai as a back-up. If officials decide to quarantine players in India before they leave for Dubai, they have to arrange a hotel to create a bio-secure bubble.