In what comes as an unprecedented move, the final of the 2019 edition of the Indian Premier League will take place in Hyderabad at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium. The move is a stark departure from the norms of previous years' where the winners of a tournament would get to host next editions tournament opener as well as the final.
With the Chennai Super Kings emerging as champions last year, the Men in Yellow were expected to stage the grand finale of the 2019 edition but the MA Chidambaram failed to get the requisite permission to operate the three closed stands, forcing the BCCI to make the call.
But with the Qualifier 01 set to take place in Chennai, the defending champions still have a chance to seal a final berth, given they finish the league-stage in the top-2.
"We had to shift the matches from Chennai to Hyderabad after TNCA intimated us that they have not procured the requisite permission to open the three stands I, J and K," Vinod Rai, the Committee of Administrators chief, was quoted as saying by PTI.
"Since the gate sales of the knock-out matches are BCCI's prerogative, we had to take a call. We would be having two knock-out matches in Vizag," Rai added.
The three stands of the Chidambaram Stadium have been closed except for India vs Pakistan ODI back in 2012 as the construction is not in line with the guidelines laid down by the Chennai Corporation.
"CSK, by virtue of being defending champions, were allotted the Qualifier 1 and final. Now if they finish in the top two, you cannot take away all the games. They deserve to get at least one of the knock-out games," Rai said.
While the first qualifier will be hosted by Chennai, Vishakhapatnam will play host to the Eliminator and the 2nd Qualifier before the tournament culminates at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium on May 12.
The defending champions have all but qualified for the playoffs and will be looking to seal the final berth at home, provided [which looks highly likely] they finish in the top-2 in the points table.