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BCCI contemplating to shift IPL final from Chennai

News4u-Sports Desk-New Delhi: With empty seats due to lack of official clearance for a few stands becoming an eyesore during IPL matches in Chennai, there is a move within the BCCI to shift the eliminator and the final to an alternate venue to ensure a full house.

While most of the other venues have attracted capacity crowd, Chennai has been an aberration with as many as 12,000 seats going empty because clearance from the city planning department for want of building approval is still awaited.

The three stands — G, H and I — each of them with capacity of 4,000 seats, remained unoccupied since the West Indies-India one-dayer in November last year and the subsequent Champions League Twenty20 tournament as well.

Although no BCCI official is willing to speak openly on this issue, there are murmurs of a move to get the marquee matches (eliminator on May 25 and final on May 27) out of Chennai.

“We have witnessed amazing response at all the venues of this year`s IPL. It will be a pity if the final is played in front of a half-empty stadium. Therefore, the possibility of shifting the matches from Chennai is being explored,” a top BCCI official told PTI.

The new-look galleries were built after demolishing the old stands as part of redevelopment of the four-decade-old Chepauk stadium. But it has been sealed since October last after the Chennai Corporation issued a lock and seal notice citing lack of building approval. The stands were open during the World Cup last year.

Initially, the IPL authorities were told that the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association would get the requisite approvals for the three galleries within the first few games.

“But now we are heading towards the business end of the IPL and there is still no sign of the matter being resolved. Whatever decision needs to be taken has to be done within a week as a lot of work is required when you shift matches to a new venue,” the official said.

As an alternative venue, the BCCI has shortlisted the DY Patil Stadium and the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, the Feroze Shah Kotla in Delhi, and the venues in Pune, Kolkata and Bangalore.

When contacted, IPL Chairman Rajiv Shukla said he was not aware of any such move. “As far as I am concerned, there is no such plan to shift the venue,” Shukla said.

TNCA Secretary Kashi Vishwanathan also said that they were not aware of such development. “I have no information, what can I say,” he said.

On whether the TNCA would be able to procure the approval ahead of playoffs, Vishwanathan said, “I am not aware of that, so I can`t comment.”

The BCCI will stand to lose about Rs two crore for each of the matches in Chennai if the stands continue to go empty due to administrative hassles.

Apart from the IPL authorities being concerned about the empty stands, there is also pressure from the TV rights holders to hold the final at a venue which guarantees a capacity turnout.

“It does not make a good picture to see empty stands, particularly in the finals,” another influential BCCI source stated about broadcasters` apprehension.

“The demand for tickets has seen an unprecedented high this season. Even a franchise co-owner like Shah Rukh Khan could not get enough tickets to accommodate his close friends for the Delhi Daredevils vs Kolkata Knight Riders match,” the source added.

“So, when the demand for tickets is so high, how can we have a match in a half-empty stadium.”
In Chennai, after the corporation action, TNCA had approached the Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) for approval and the process of getting clearance is still underway.

Once the approval was obtained, the capacity would go up to around 40,000. There is a lot of demand for tickets but it is still not clear when the three stands would be opened for general public. PTI



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BCCI chief N Srinivasan’s son arrested in brawl case

News4u-Sports Desk-MUMBAI: BCCI president N Srinivasan’s son,Ashwin and his friend were arrested on Monday for allegedly thrashing the staff of an upscale restaurant-pub in suburban Bandra and later also a cop, who asked them to leave the bar after paying the bill, police said on Thursday.

Ashwin (40) and his friend Avi Krishnamurthy (35) who spent overnight in Bandra police station’s lock-up were produced before a local court, which granted them bail on Tuesday.

According to police, Ashwin went to Escobar on Monday night and was having drinks. He asked the staff to bring some more alcohol which they refused citing 0130 hours deadline. Enraged Ashwin and his friend started arguing with the waiters and refused to pay the bill, that run up Rs 30,000, until their order was accepted.

“When the staff refused, the duo assaulted them. The bar staff notified police when our men went there. When asked to pay the bill and leave the bar, the furious duo punched one of our constables,” said DCP Pratap Digaonkar.

“They two were taken into custody and booked under relevant sections of the IPC for assaulting and preventing a public servant from discharging his duty,” Digaokar added.

The duo was on Tuesday produced before a court which granted them bail, he said.

According to sources, while talking rudely to the staff and cops, Ashwin stated he was very influential and from a rich family.

When contacted, Srinivasan, who owns the IPL team Chennai Super Kings, shot back saying “What do you want me to say,” and disconnected the phone call. PTI

BCCI secretary N Srinivasan

BCCI secretary N Srinivasan

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I-T department asks for over Rs 413 crore as tax from BCCI

News4u-Sports Desk-NEW DELHI: The income tax department has demanded over Rs 413 crore as tax from the world’s richest cricket body, the BCCI as per its income assessment for the year 2009-10 of which only Rs 41 crore have been paid, an RTI reply has said.

The department said BCCI used to get income tax exemption as a charitable organisation but now that exemption has been withdrawn and its earnings now come under business income.

Responding to activist Subhash Agrawal, the department said that the BCCI had made over Rs 964 crore for the assessment year 2009-10 for which the department had demanded tax of over Rs 413 crore but so far Rs 41.91 crore have been paid as tax by the cricket body.

The assessment for the years 2010-11 and 2011-12 is pending, it said.

“Effective steps should be taken to realise the tax dues of Rs 373 crore from the board,” Agrawal said.PTI



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India lost to Oz by 110 runs

News4u-Sports Desk- A listless India’s batting failed miserably as they slumped to a massive 110-run defeat in a cricket tri-series match againstAustralia, who managed to get a bonus point, inBrisbane on Sunday.Chasing Australia’s mammoth 288 for five, largely built around a blistering onslaught in the last 10 overs, India never really recovered after the three early jolts to fold up for 178 in 43.3 overs on a bouncy Gabba track.

The Indians were outplayed in every department of the game by the hosts who made amends for their back-to-back defeats to take top position in points table.

Australia now have 14 points from five matches while Indiaare second in the table with 10 points from five games. Sri Lanka have collected seven points from four matches.

The top-order Indian batting crumbled in the face of some hostile bowling in early overs. The late rally by skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (56) only ended up in delaying the inevitable.

Pacer Ben Hilfenhaus marked his return to Australia’s one-day side with career-best figures of 5 for 33, including the scalp of Sachin Tendulkar (3) who still remains in search of his elusive 100th international century.

None of the Indian top order batted with assurance or long enough and the biggest stand of the innings was 46 which Dhoni and Suresh Raina (28) stitched between themselves for the fifth wicket.

Hilfenhaus and Brett Lee (3 for 49) were hostile on a spicy wicket and ripped out the heart of Indian batting in their first spells.

Hilfenhaus, playing his first match of the tri-series, and Lee, eager to leave his mark, let it rip from the first ball. Lee bowled a peach of a delivery in his first over and Gautam Gambhir (5), without any discernible footwork, edged a catch behind the stumps.

Lee now rattled Tendulkar, bowling a brutish bouncer which thudded into the great man’s helmet as he tried to pay an attacking pull shot.

The ball then lobbed off to mid-on and there was a concerted appeal for a catch by the Australians. But the ball had made no contact with the bat and Tendulkar survived.

Hilfenhaus then turned up the heat from the other end. In his third over, he bowled a widish lifting delivery to Virat Kohli (12) who slashed up high in the air and offered an easy catch to Xavier Doherty at third man. The fielder was not up to the offer and it was now Kohli’s turn to survive.

Tendulkar departed the next ball though as the batsmen changed ends. Backing away, Tendulkar tried to glide a lifting delivery over the slips but succeeded in only offering a catch at third man.

Rohit Sharma (0) copped yet another failure, essaying an ill-adviced slash off the front foot and offering yet another wicket to Lee.

It soon turned into 36 for four in the 11th over when Kohli edged Hilfenhaus to first slip David Hussey but refused to budge as the appear was referred to the third umpire.

The ruling from the upstairs was no different but Kohli kept gesticulating and showing his disapproval till he disappeared into the tunnel.

India then had a reasonable 46-run stand for the fifth wicket between Raina and Dhoni which ended when the left-hander chased a wild delivery from Dan Christian and offered a catch behind the stumps. India were now 82 for five in the 23rd over.

India lost their sixth wicket in the form of Ravinder Jadeja (18) who holed out in the deep off Christian to plunge India to 114 for 6 in the 31st over.

Dhoni though waged a lone battle and hit a spectacular one-two of a six and a four off Lee after he opted for the batting powerplay in the 35th over.

However, the pyrotechnics of Indian skipper was to end when he pulled a short delivery from Hilfenhaus into the hands of midwicket fielder.

Dhoni made 56 off 84 balls with two fours and a six. Indiawere 149 for 7 in the 38th over and the match was as good as over, barring the shouting.

Earlier, electing to bat, Australia recovered from a wobbly start and smashed 110 runs in the final 10 overs to post 288 for 5.

Half centuries by Peter Forrest (52) and Mike Hussey (59) and their century stand for fourth wicket help set the base before impressive cameos by Daniel Christian and David Hussey.

Christian (32 off 18 balls) and Hussey (24 off 20 balls) plundered 58 runs from the final five overs, the penultimate over by Vinay Kumar yielding 18 runs.

Irfan Pathan claimed 3/61 and Indian effort was generally good in the field but for sloppy work in the final overs.

Australia made a fine start before they fell into a quagmire in the first half of the innings.

David Warner and Matthew Wade had put on 70 runs for the first wicket by the 13th over before the innings almost came to a standstill.

Warner was set for a long innings with 43 from 46 balls (five fours and a six) before he tamely pushed a leg-stump half volley from Irfan Pathan to the lone fielder on the onside inside the ring.

Stand-in captain Ricky Ponting, with just 11 runs from four previous innings, looked completely out of sorts, getting off the mark of only his 13th delivery before falling on 7, caught in the deep off the probing line of Zaheer Khan.

India wrested control with only 12 runs from five overs of bowling powerplay for the wicket of Ponting, the hundred only coming up in the 25th over, the last 50 having consumed 91 deliveries.

Wade, with apparent intent to anchor the innings, had hit only one four in the first 25 overs and had 33 from 58 balls before he freed his arms and swung Suresh Raina high into the stands for six.

Wade then hit Umesh Yadav for an exquisite four through covers to convey he was ready to shift gears. However, the change of pace of Rohit Sharma, took him out of the equation as he lamely offered a return catch to the part-time bowler.

Wade batted for 67 minutes and hit two fours and a six asAustralia slumped to 117 for 3 in the 28th over.

It was still a fortuitous knock since he was reprieved by Rohit Sharma, leaping in front of first slip Sachin Tendulkar.

Drama and confusion followed in the 29th over when Suresh Raina dragged Mike Hussey out of his crease in his seventh over and as the batsman missed, Mahendra Singh Dhoni removed the bails.

Indians were certain and celebrations had begun when the third umpire ruled the batsman out.

However, third umpire Bruce Oxenford had pressed the wrong button and soon there was this unusual scene of both onfield umpires, Steve Davis and Billy Bowden running behind the departing Hussey and politely escorting him back to the crease.

A livid Dhoni had some pointed remarks to make to Bowden, the square leg umpire who had referred the decision to third umpire.Mike Hussey at this stage was on 1 and Australia were 119 for 3 in the 29th over.


Indian Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni

Indian Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni

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BCCI to unearth bowling talent across country

News4u-News Desk- In a bid to boost the country’s bowling repository, the BCCI has launched a programme to unearth talent through open trials for pacemen and spinners at various centres.

The trials will be conducted by the National Cricket Academy faculty in Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, over the next couple of weeks and boys between the age of 17 and 22 will be eligible, a BCCI release stated.

The youngsters, though, should have played in any BCCI-run tournament to participate.

Former Test cricketer, Karsan Ghavri, and Yoginder Puri will supervise the trials and shortlist the bowlers.

While the trials will be held in Himachal’s Dharamsala on February 18 and 19, the boys from Jammu and Kashmir will be able to showcase their skills in Jammu on February 22 and 23.
The camp will then move to Ranchi on February 25 before shifting to Raipur on February 28.


Himachal Pradesh: Feb 18 and 19; venue – Dharamshala.
Jammu & Kashmir : Feb 22 and 23; venue Jammu.
Jharkhand : Feb 25 and 26; venue Ranchi.
Chhattisgarh : Feb 28 and 29; venue Raipur.


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Tendulkar should play all matches, insists Gavaskar

News4u-Sports Desk- NEW DELHI: With speculation on that Sachin Tendulkar may be rested for the next match, former India captain Sunil Gavaskar on Wednesday suggested that the veteran batsman should not miss any of the ODIs in the ongoingtri-series.

Tendulkar looked in good touch as he scored 48 before being bowled by Angelo Mathews but it is still not clear whether the senior batsman would play the next ODI or not.

The team management has opted for rotation policy as Virender Sehwag was rested in the first match against Australia and Gautam Gambhirwas rested for Wednesday’s match.

“I think Sachin should be playing in all the matches. If you want to use rotation policy then it should be used to rotate and field all the players. I believe that Tendulkar, Gambhir and Sehwag should play and may be one among Rohit Sharma or Suresh Raina has to sit out,” Gavaskar told NDTV on Wednesday.

“When you are choosing a squad of 16 and then you have to select the most balanced side. If someone is not performing then you should change him. But one needs to be upfront about it that you are dropping a player and not resting him. If someone is not performing he can be dropped and that’s a fair call.”

Gavaskar praised Man-of-the-match Ravichandran Ashwin’s temperament. The Chennai player took three wickets and then came up with a crucial unbeaten 30-run cameo in India’s chase.

“Ashwin looked to be back at his best. The bouncy strip at the Perth also helped his bowling. He looked to be back to an easy action. I am glad that he is the Man of the Match as he showed a lot of courage during batting and also ice-cool temperament,” Gavaskar was full of praise for the Tamil Nadu all-rounder.

While terming that Sri Lanka lacked a ” slow bowler”, he lauded Virat Kohli for his knock of 77.

“Virat is a quick learner. Today, he ran for a non-existent single but from next time he would realise that if he has pushed the ball that hard, he wouldn’t like to take risk,” Gavaskar added.PTI



Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar

Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar

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BCCI scraps deal with Nimbus, bank guarantee of Rs 2000 crore forfeited

News4u-Sports Desk-NEW DELHI: Taking a tough stand, the BCCIon Monday scrapped the contract with its broadcast rights holder Nimbus for defaulting on payments and forfeited the bank guarantee amount of Rs 2,000 crore.

The decision to terminate Nimbus’ contract, three years before its expiry, was taken at the BCCI’s emergent working committee meeting where members were “unanimous” in scrapping the telecast deal for India’s home series matches. “Members were unanimous that such an organisation which has been a regular defaulter in terms of payments cannot be continued with,” one of the members of the working committee said on condition of anonymity.

Nimbus, which had signed a four-year deal with the BCCI in October 2009 for a whopping Rs 2000 crore, paid Rs 24 crore on Monday ahead of the working committee meeting but there was still an outstanding amount of Rs 88 crore.

“Not a single series has gone where they have paid the full amount on time. Also another reason is that India’s international commitments at home have finished with the ODI series against the West Indies,” the official said. Since there was a big gap before the next home series gets underway, the BCCI top brass felt that there is enough time to find a new broadcaster.

The termination of Nimbus means that the rest of the domestic season would not be televised. It was also learnt that the working committee members were unhappy about World Series Hockey (WSH) being promoted in the air time scheduled for cricket.

“They were bringing hockey players during the breaks of the cricket matches and forcing commentators Sanjay Manjrekar and Courtney Walsh to ask questions with the hockey players. The break-time show was supposed to be solely dedicated to cricket,” the official said.

As per the contract, Nimbus had to pay an approximate amount of Rs 31.5 crore per game to the BCCI.

Apart from the current payment, the BCCI and Nimbus also had a long-pending ‘issue’ over radio rights. Nimbus was not happy with the All India Radio’s offer and had asked the BCCI to deal with them directly.

When contacted, Yannick Colaco, COO, Nimbus Sport said that he was not yet aware of any such development.PTI



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IPL 5 to have 76 matches; players’ auction in Jan or Feb

News4u-News Desk-

The players’ auction for the fifth edition of the Indian Premier League will be held in late January or early February and the teams will play their games on a home-and-away basis with each of the nine franchises playing 16 games.


The change means that the cash-rich Twenty20 tournament reverts back to its original format, where all the teams played each other twice.


In the upcoming season, each team is now going to play eight home games.
The nine franchises will go into the auction having an additional salary cap of USD two million to spend on players.


The players from the Kochi Tuskers Kerala franchise, which was terminated by the BCCI in September this year, will be part of the auction, the IPL Governing Council chairman Rajeev Shukla said in a statement.
The decisions were taken at the IPL Governing council’s meet that took place in Chennai on Saturday.
The IPL GC has also increased the number of players in each team from 30 to 33.


The number of foreign players in each team will be 11 instead of 10 while two more Indian players can be added to each team’s roster.


However, the number of foreign players that can be part of the final XI will remain at four.


There will also be an additional four play-off matches, to be held in Bangalore and Chennai, that will take the total tally of matches in the tournament to 76.


The IPL-5 season will commence in Chennai on 4th April and the final will be played at the same venue on 27th May, 2012.


The trading window will open on 15th December, 2011 and run through to 20th January, 2012.


There will be a short second trading window after the players’ auction, informed Shukla.


The trading regulations will be as per previous seasons.


There will be no financial cap on trading and franchises can only add to their squad, by way of trading, a maximum of 4 players who were bought in the 2011 auction, and they must stay within the squad composition regulations at all times.

Congress MP and BCCI Vice President Rajiv Shukla

Congress MP and BCCI Vice President Rajiv Shukla

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India can beat Australia in Australia: Srikkanth

News4u-News Desk-MUMBAI: Selection committee chairman Kris Srikkanth expressed confidence that the Indian team named on Saturday can achieve the rare feat of beating Australia in a Test series on their own soil in next month’s tour of that country.

“If you ask me today whether this team can beat Australia in Australia, I would say I’m very confident. With the grace of god we should beat Australia in Australia in a Test series,” Srikkant told reporters after announcing the 17-member squad for the Test series in Australia.

“Let’s look forward to a great Australia tour. Let’s pray that this side beats Australia in Australia, which has been a cherished dream for every Indian cricketer and every Indian fan,” he said after the selection committee meeting.

He said the selectors have chosen a balanced side, taking into account fitness of the players for the gruelling tour which begins with the first Test in Melbourne (December 26-30).

“We have chosen a balanced side, taking everything into account, including fitness and Australian conditions. Our batsmen and bowlers are in form. Now we have all kinds of bowlers, fast, medium fast, swing bowlers, spinners — left arm and off spin. So depending on conditions there the team management will select the team on a match-to match basis,” said the former captain.

On out of form off-spinner Harbhajan Singh being ignored for the tour, Srikkanth said, “Unfortunately, we cannot help it as the team selects itself. In Australia, you cannot have more than two spinners. Pragyan Ojha and Ashwin are doing an excellent job.

“Sometimes it becomes bad luck, sometimes people miss out. I’m sure everyone has their own time and space to come back,” he explained.

He said some of the selectors have played in Australia and they have applied their minds in picking the players for the tour.

“We have Mohinder Amarnath who has played a lot of cricket in Australia. I have also played a few matches in Australia. Then we have Narendra Hirwani who too has played in Australia. We have all put our minds together as to what we need to beat Australia in Australia a Test series.”

Pace spearhead Zaheer Khan, who missed most part of the England tour and ongoing series against the West Indies because of hamstring and ankle injury, has been provisionally named in the squad subject to passing the fitness test.

And Srikkanth said that by the time the team would leave for Australia, Zaheer would get enough time to prove his fitness in a couple of Ranji Trophy games.

“As far as Zaheer is concerned, he will play in a couple of Ranji Trophy matches. And once is he fully match-fit and everything is fine, he will join the side. He may also go with the team, as by the time (the team leaves) he would have played a couple of Ranji matches,” insisted Srikkanth.PTI

BCCI Selection Committee Chairman Krish Srikkanth

BCCI Selection Committee Chairman Krish Srikkanth

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India beat West Indies in Eden Test to win Test series

News4u-Sports Desk

India beat West Indies by an innings and 15 runs in the second test at Eden Gardens  on Thursday to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.


West Indies, following-on after being bowled out for 153, were dismissed for 463 runs in their second innings before tea on the fourth day.



Earlier, Darren Bravo slammed an unbeaten century to lead West Indies fight in the second innings and delay the inevitable at lunch.



Following on after conceding a huge 478-run lead in the first innings, West Indies were 339 four at lunch at the Eden Gardens.



Bravo went into the break remaining unbeaten on 117 to register only his second century in Test matches in less than a month. He hit 13 boundaries and four sixes during his 204 ball unconquered stay at the crease.



Bravo shared vital 108 runs for the fourth wicket with Shivnarine Chanderpaul (47) in the first session of the day that had little for the Indian bowlers.



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