With the announcement of the COVID-19 lockdown and social distancing protocols, the sports industry, in particular, felt the impact of not being able to host events that saw fans throng to stadiums to cheer on their favourite teams. But as they say, the show (game, in this case) must go on. Today, major leagues and events across the globe are announcing a comeback to the fields, albeit without the fans, but that shouldn’t spoil your plans of being a part of the fun. Here are the top 4 national and international sporting events to look forward to as they strive to uplift your “2020” mood.
- Indian Premier League – 19th September to 10th November 2020
The mere announcement of the IPL, which will be held September onwards, was enough to create excitement and anticipation among fans who were eagerly waiting for their favourite ‘festival’ of the year to return. While the tournament will be played in the United Arab Emirates this year, fans can enjoy bingeing and throwing virtual viewing parties at home. You can also catch re-runs on TV or streaming platforms. All in all, even if Indian fans may not be able to watch the action in stadiums, the buzz will only intensify in millions of homes across India. The enthusiasm for this year’s IPL will also result in increased consumption of Fantasy Cricket with cricket enthusiasts flocking to mobile gaming and esports platforms such as Mobile Premier League (MPL), which is also the principal sponsor of IPL’s KKR team this year.
- Caribbean Premier League – 18th August to 10th September 2020
Though international cricketing tournaments have already begun, CPL will be the first major T20 league to take place after the outbreak of COVID-19. The entire 2020 season of the Caribbean Premier League will be played in Trinidad and Tobago from August 18 to September 10. As a tournament that attracts global talent, it is a growing favourite among Indian fans, and this year you can catch the action live on screen as it is being streamed across multiple portals.
- Virtual Boston Marathon – Between Sept. 7 and 14 2020
The lockdown caused the cancellation of marathons and half marathons all across the world, which was quite disheartening for athletes from all walks of life who train for these events throughout the year. However, there’s a silver lining: a shift to virtual marathons and half marathons in 2020. The Boston Athletic Association recently announced that the 124th Boston Marathon will be held as a virtual event. Whether you’re in India or America, you can now be a part of the action. All you have to do is complete a continuous marathon within a six-hour time period any time between September 7 and 14. To make the run feel authentic, you are given a printable finish line and winners break tape to recreate at least some aspects of the traditional race. In the end, those who signed up to run the 2020 Boston Marathon can still walk away knowing they were a part of the legendary event.
- Premier League 2020-21 – 12th September 2020 – 23rd May 2021
Football fans have a lot to look forward to, starting mid-September. Premier League weekends are back with the new season starting mid-September onwards. The UEFA Champions League and The UEFA Europa League fixtures are already underway amidst lockdown restrictions, but that’s not stopping fans from tuning in to their screens and keep the cheering, and banter that comes along with the game going.
Even though 2020 may have put a dent in your travel plans, especially if you planned to travel to catch a live match, technology has you covered! Host a virtual watch party, complete with backgrounds and effects, and with the new formats, you can continue to enjoy your favourite sports this year.