IPL 2020 to stay under Covid-19 risk, no one ready to give insurance cover

With Covid-19 hitting and impacting the entire sporting world, the Indian Premier League bandwagon wanted to protect themselves via an insurance cover. Exactly the same way, the way WIMBLEDON 2020 protected themselves.

Be it the IPL 2020 organizers BCCI, IPL teams, IPL Sponsors or the IPL broadcast partners Star India, everyone tried shielding themselves from Covid-19 threat. But the Insurance market has declined any such cover to the stakeholders of IPL 2020.

This means, IPL 2020 will be played without any Covid-19 protection cover. According to the industry experts, no such cover could be given to the IPL 2020 stakeholders as Covid-19 is a ongoing event and no will provide such a cover currently.

“Yes, there have been many queries as everyone wants COVID cover, Sponsors, franchises and cricket board. But its standard exclusion so nobody will provide it in Indian market as well as International currently because Covid-19 is an on-going event”, said Karan Ruia, AVP Howden Insurance Brokers

Wimbledon’s organisers got $142 million when the tennis grand slam was cancelled because of Covid-19. The IPL’s organisers won’t get even a penny in the event of such a cancellation. After several disruptions due to the Covid pandemic, the IPL is beginning on Sep19th with eight teams once again vying for the trophy.

But while the organisers of tennis Grand Slam Wimbledon got around $142 million after the tournament was cancelled due to COVID-19, the IPL will not be entitled to any amount if it were to be cancelled. This is because the BCCI cover for the IPL does not cover a coronavirus outbreak, whereas the cover taken by the All England Lawn Tennis Club, which organizes Wimbledon, explicitly covered infectious outbreaks such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Wimbledon organisers had been religiously paying close to $31.7 million as the premium for this pandemic cover ever since the SARS outbreak in 2003.

InsideSport,s Kapil Gurditta spoke to Karan Ruia, AVP – Howden Insurance Brokers, one of the lead company that deals in Sports Events Insurances to understand why IPL 2020 could not be covered by Insurance cover for Covid-19.

Kapil : What is the major Insurance cover and policies in IPL?

Karan :Currently for IPL, there are two major policies for the board and franchises- Event cancellation policy and Players Loss of fees policy for franchises.

Kapil : Is the Covid Insurance covered in this?

Karan : No, Covid will not be covered under any policy Globally currently because Covid-19 is an on-going event

Kapil : Did any IPL franchise approached you for Covid cover?

Karan : Yes, there have been many queries as everyone wants COVID cover, Sponsors, franchises and cricket board. But its standard exclusion so nobody will provide it in Indian market as well as International currently because Covid-19 is an on-going event

Kapil : According to you how much percent of IPL is insured and what things are insured?
Karan  :  IPL is fully insured but none of the policies have got a Covid cover. Franchises and BCCI have take event cancellation policy where revenues are covered through Sponsors for Franchises and Cricket board will cover their expenses for arranging the matches. It totally depends on the entity, how and what they want to cover.

Kapil: Is there any Specific insurance IPL team as asked for?

Karan:  As usual franchises and board take Event Cancellation policy, Loss of Player Fee, Group Personal Accident policy and Group Medical Policy. Since, IPL 2020 is  happening in Dubai, the recent edition is overseas mediclaim policy.

Kapil: Has the demand for Sports Insurance increased due to Covid?

Karan: Yes, there is an increase in demand for sports insurance, the number of enquiries that we get has increased but now people want to take insurance policies that cover pandemic events.

Kapil: According to you what type of Insurance should Sports team franchises take? 

Karan: I am sure insurance cover for Pandemic will be introduced in the near future as there are catastrophic events as pandemic. Before Corona, there were standard Pandemic covers which Wimbeldon was taking since many years and fortunately there were no claims reported but this year they had a big claim in that and it was a huge benefit to them.

 Usually in India in my experience before the COVID, Adverse weather and Rain was the major cover of what every entity would ask for, so that was something difficult to arrange but nobody was worried about communicable disease and terrorism.

Kapil: Since the IPL will be organised in Dubai, is there any new cover that IPL franchises and Board has asked for?

Karan: On the event cancellation front, the limit has increased drastically. For example: If an entity was taking a policy for 50 Cr for insuring their event in India, that has now gone upto 250 Cr since their expenses have increased this time. The premium rates have also changed now, earlier it was convenient to find capacities in Indian market as a Sports Sector but now after Pandemic events and since the limits have increased drastically in IPL, now most of the Insurance companies are finding it difficult to offer 100% capacities.