Sports

Jharkhand ODI venue given the short shrift

Saba Nayakan Kolkata | Updated on March 24, 2013 Published on March 24, 2013

Match fit: A view of the illuminated JSCA cricket stadium at Ranchi on the eve of the thirdone-day international match between India and England earlier this year (file photo).

The sudden decision to shift India’s premier National Twenty20 tournament for the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy from Ranchi to Indore by the BCCI has come as a rude shock to followers of the game. The decision was taken on the grounds that participating teams were unable to make proper travel arrangements to reach the venue on time. The championship was to begin on March 25 and end on March 31 just two days before the opening of the IPL-6.

Significantly, the Board’s programme and fixture committee, which met almost a year before, had finalised Ranchi as the venue for the all-India tournament at the beginning of the season. The same panel had finalised the dates of the zonal competition from March 17 to 22.

Ratified by panel

All the above decisions were ratified by the Board’s working committee as well. This meant nobody cared to find out whether teams could have any logistics logjam at any of the venues. By taking the tournament away from Ranchi, the Board has possibly put the 10 participating teams into further trouble as they would have to redraw their travel plans for the second time in two days.

The Board’s decision also smacks of insensitivity towards the JSCA. Having successfully hosted its first ODI between England and India in January this year, the State Association must have made bid plans to organise the current tournament. This is not only a severe loss of face but also a big dent to its recently acquired reputation as a good organiser.

When the revised fixture for the meet was released, the opening matches were slated for March 26 instead of 25. Why couldn’t the Board give the teams one extra day to reach Ranchi instead of taking away the championship to another State? The JSCA has had to grin and bear the humiliation and get on with the business of running cricket in the State without uttering a word of dissent.

The capital of Jharkhand, which is the hometown of Captain M.S. Dhoni, will surely miss out seeing some of India’s best T20 players, especially those who are not part of any of the IPL franchise.

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Published on March 24, 2013
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