Rajasthan Royals did not participate in the tournament in 2016 and 2017 as they were banned    AFP
Rajasthan Royals did not participate in the tournament in 2016 and 2017 as they were banned from the league AFP

In IPL 2015, two adjacent venues acted as home grounds to two different franchises, both of whom sport blue and gold. Mumbai Indians rule Wankhede Stadium and less than a kilometre away, Rajasthan Royals (RR) were camping at the Brabourne Stadium, their home for a few games that season. It seems RR are set to be nomads yet again. Will RR once again play their home matches in away venues?

A confusion over date of hearing at Rajasthan High Court could extend Rajasthan Cricket Association’s (RCA) wait for re-affiliation with the BCCI longer. The delay could lead to Jaipur missing IPL matches again. At the last hearing on the dispute between BCCI and the RCA, Justice Manish Bhandari mentioned he would take up the case after the Indian board’s SGM on December 11.

The confusion

An RCA official told Times of India, “The judge wanted to know when the BCCI SGM was scheduled. When we informed him that it was on December 11, he had deferred the hearing to December 12.”

BCCI likely to lift ban imposed on Rajasthan Cricket Association
BCCI likely to lift ban imposed on Rajasthan Cricket Association

A miscommunication saw the date put on the official register as January 12. From December 13, Justice Bhandari left for a month-long vacation and the date could not be rescheduled. BCCI would have presented the SGM decision at the HC on December 12 which can now happen only after January 12. The IPL venues are likely to be decided before that.

RR want to return to Jaipur but they maybe forced to shift to any other city like Pune. After BCCI’s decision to revoke the RCA ban, their president CP Joshi has written to the Indian board to allot RR’s home matches at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium. BCCI are yet to respond.

Author’s take

Even the Rajasthan Sports Minister has requested BCCI to allot RR’s home matches at Jaipur. BCCI can make a conditional announcement till the court hearing. It makes much sense for the Royals to play their home games at Jaipur. It is not fair on any side to shift bases and play their home game away.