CPL organisers have confirmed their intention to stage the competition entirely in Trinidad & Tobago between August 18 and September 10.
The competition will be played, subject to government approval, behind closed doors with the top-paid players expected to accept a salary cut of up to 30% when compared to 2019 levels. There will be no salary cut for players below the US$20,000 bracket.
Players are currently required to arrive in Trinidad by August 1 in order to satisfy the quarantine period mandated by the Trinidad & Tobago government. There is a possibility this quarantine period could be lifted, at least for visitors from certain nations, in due course.
With a smaller window available for the tournament, it will feature double-headers on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday and only three matches – two semi-finals and a final – in the play-offs rather than the usual four. Games will start at 10am and 5.30pm during the week and 10am and 2pm at the weekends.
All players will stay in the tournament hotel in conditions overseen by a medical advisory committee. Match officials will also be expected to take a 30% pay cut. Most CPL staff have already done so.
“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,” Michael Hall, the CPL operations manager, wrote in an update sent to various stakeholders.
“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.
“[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.
“We have taken the decision to stage the tournament (subject to final approval from the government of Trinidad & Tobago, which we expect next week). I can advise that the tournament period will be from August 1 to September 12, with the first matches on August 18 and the final on September 10.”
While there is no firm date for the draft at this stage, it is expected to be at the end of June. Players who have already signed contracts will be asked to sign a “variation letter” agreeing to a cut.
“We accept we are asking players to give up a portion of their salary,” Hall wrote. “However without such a gesture it will be impossible to run the tournament, so we need to be clear that non-acceptance of the proposed reductions will result in your clients already under contract being replaced, or if not already contracted, being removed from the draft list.”
George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo
ESPN Sports Media Ltd.