190320  IPL
The upcoming edition of IPL2020 is certain to be played behind closed doors, at least in the initial days. Image Credit: BCCI

Dubai: The Indian Premier League (IPL) plans to implement a tighter dope testing procedure during the forthcoming edition in the UAE - targetting a collection of at least 50 samples during In-Competition (IC) and Out-of-Competition (OOC) testing during the event.

Three high-ranking National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) officials, along with six empanelled Dope Control Officers (DCOs), will be travelling to the UAE for sample collection, according to a PTI report


“NADA will have nine people in UAE and they will also take help of the UAE’s National Anti Doping Organization if they require further manpower, in this case chaperones who help in sample collection,” a senior BCCI official said.

NADA will have three teams with one official and two DCOs at each of the three venues along with local NADO staff in each of the units. He, however, didn’t divulge whether the entire cost will be borne by NADA or BCCI will share bill as it is being held outside India.

In India, it’s the NADA which bears the cost of collection, transportation and testing. “The NADA officers will be asked to stay in the BCCI created bio bubble,” a source informed.

The NADA has asked BCCI to prepare five separate Dope Control Stations (DCS) in the UAE - three at the match venues in Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Dubai along with two at the practice facilities in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

While the sample numbers may be limited, but it is expected that the BCCI might collect a few blood samples too as transportation from Dubai to the WADA-accredited lab in Doha will be easier.

Meanwhile, the BCCI secretary Jay Shah said that officials of BCCI’s state units won’t be able to attend “at least the beginning” of the IPL because of the strict bio-bubble in place for the tournament beginning on September 19 in the UAE.

Shah is confident that by the business-end of the tournament, some of the travel restrictions will be relaxed, making it easier for members to travel to the UAE. The IPL final will be played on November 10.

BCCI inviting officials from its state units for the IPL ceremony and play-offs is conventional practice it follows, whether the tournament is held in India or abroad.

“While I am confident that we would be able to deliver a memorable tournament, I will be approaching the start of the tournament with a heavy heart as your absence would render the opening incomplete,” Shah wrote in an email to state units.