Dalmiya takes a dig at Pawar

Thursday, February 24, 2011

KOLKATA - Targeting International Cricket Council (ICC) president Sharad Pawar for Eden Gardens losing out on the Feb 27 India-England World Cup game, Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) chief Jagmohan Dalmiya Thursday indicated that the match was taken away from the iconic ground because of a ‘conspiracy.

“Our match was taken away because cricket operation was not up to date. But many stadiums in the country, which will hold World Cup matches, are not fully ready yet. Wankhede stadium (in Mumbai) is not ready to hold a match. So why is Eden Gardens barred from holding a match and other stadiums allowed to hold matches? Yardstick cannot be different,” Dalmiya told reporters here.

Wankhede, which is scheduled to hold the World Cup final April 2, is considered the pocket borough of Pawar.

The India-England tie was shifted to Bangalore after an ICC inspection team decreed it would not be ready in time to host the match. The ground - which held the World Cup final in 1987 and a semifinal in 1996 - would have to do without any game featuring India in the big event this time around. The stadium will now host its first World Cup match March 15 between South Africa and Ireland.

Asked whether it was a political conspiracy against the Eden Gardens, he said: “I do not know about politics. But if this is not a conspiracy, then what would it be?”

“Mr Powar, this was not cricket,” he said adding whatever happened was very painful.

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