The IPL governing council has decided to allot two of this season's playoff matches - the Eliminator and second Qualifier - to the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) in Pune. The games will be played at the MCA stadium in Gahunje on May 23 and 25.
"For the play-off, there was a suggestion that since Rising Pune Supergiant (now defunct) were the runners-up last time, we should give first priority to Pune," IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla said after a governing council meeting on Friday. "If the stadium and the wicket is ready, the first priority would be given to Pune, if not, then we will consider Kolkata for the playoffs."
The eliminator and the second qualifier are usually held at the home venue of the previous-season's runners-up, and by this logic Pune would have got the two games anyway. However, Rising Pune Supergiant, who lost last season's final to Mumbai Indians, are no longer part of the tournament. Other state associations, including those of Bengal and Uttar Pradesh, had been pushing to host the games, and in a move to eliminate rival states from staking claim, MCA president Abhay Apte had sent an email to Shukla, stressing the "unwritten rule" that the previous year's runners-up host the playoff games.