IPL 2024 – KKR vs Royals match moved to April 16

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Kolkata Knight Riders’ (KKR) home match against Rajasthan Royals (RR), scheduled for April 17, has been brought up by a day to April 16, after the Kolkata Police expressed concerns over providing security for both the match and local celebrations for Ram Navami, a Hindu festival. Bengal also begins voting in India’s general elections from April 19, so a section of security personnel will already be deployed for that.

Subsequently, the game originally scheduled for April 16, Gujarat Titans (GT) vs Delhi Capitals (DC) in Ahmedabad, has been moved to April 17.

“Since the match is coinciding with Ram Navami and a portion of security is already deployed for elections. Therefore it won’t be possible for us to provide adequate security for the match on April 17,” Kolkata Police said in a letter to Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) president Snehasish Ganguly, PTI reported.

While announcing the switch, the statement put out by the IPL did not mention what happens to tickets already sold for either game.

Initially the IPL had released a partial schedule running from opening night on March 22 to April 7. The date for these two matches, along with the rest of the IPL schedule from April 8 to the final on May 26, was announced only on March 25, with organisers having waited on the dates of polling in the Indian general elections before firming things up. The elections will run in seven phases, with Bengal one of the states voting in all seven phases of the election, starting on April 19 and ending on June 1.
Matches being shifted due to security forces being tied up elsewhere, often due to a festival, is not entirely uncommon in India. Last year during the ODI World Cup, for example, the CAB had requested the BCCI to move the England vs Pakistan game from November 12 to 11 to avoid a clash with Kali Puja. The Ahmedabad Police, it is understood, had also raised similar issues with the city hosting India vs Pakistan in October on the first day of Navaratri. Eventually nine games, including Ind vs Pak, had dates or start times changed though BCCI secretary said at the time that was due to various boards writing in to the BCCI about logistical issues. And New Zealand vs Pakistan in Hyderabad was played behind closed doors with the Hyderabad Police expressing concerns over policing the game alongside Ganesh Chaturthi.

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