Deadlock over second England warm-up tie to end today
The suspense over whether England will play their second three-day warm-up tie at the Bandra Kurla Complex ground as per schedule or at the DY Patil Stadium (Nerul) is likely to come to an end today
The Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) president Ravi Savant has sought an appointment with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) boss N Srinivasan at the Cricket Centre in Churchgate today. “No conclusion has been reached so far. Our president will meet the BCCI president to end this issue,” informed MCA vice-president Vinod Deshpande yesterday. Savant will address the media after the meeting. The MCA is adamant to move the November 3 to 5 match to the DY Patil Stadium keeping in view the minimal security risk to the England team, top-notch facilities for the players and proper seating arrangement. The association’s officials feel its BKC ground is not well equipped to manage the large crowd that could turn up for the warm-up game.
“The fencing is low and there are chances of the crowd coming on to the playing area. The costs are also too much to organise a match at BKC. The association will have to bear the expenses. The DY Patil Stadium suits all requirements,” said an MCA source.
However, it is learnt that the BCCI wants the MCA to shift Mumbai’s Ranji Trophy opener against Railways from Wankhede Stadium to the BKC ground, and instead hold the England warm-up tie at the Churchgate venue where the visitors are scheduled to play the second Test from November 23-27.
For the first time since 1984-85, England will play more than three Tests in India. The 1992-93, 2001-02 and 2005-06 series involved three Tests each. It can be recalled that Andrew Flintoff led England to a memorable victory in the 2005-06 series at Wankhede Stadium against an Indian team led by Rahul Dravid. England have not won a Test series in India since David Gower’s team beat Sunil Gavaskar’s outfit in 1984-85.