Day one of the Harris Shield Elite Division semi-final between Shardashram (Marathi) and Rizvi Springfield (Bandra) had a murky start. Due to excess water on the right side of the ground at Bohra CC, the start was delayed by four hours. Also there was no scorer for the game, as the appointed scorer went to Shivaji Park Gymkhana, the earlier venue.
Students wait for the Harris Shield semi-final to start yesterday.
Umpires Vishwajeet Marathe and Amey Naik allowed the match to start only at 03:15 pm when the outfield was dubbed playable. But the organisers of the 115-year-old event, Mumbai Schools Sports Association (MSSA) are
undeterred by the mishaps. When asked to explain the mess, MSSA secretary HS Bhor said: "There was no good ground available, and we cannot change the venue at the drop of a hat. All this cannot be planned in an emergency." Let's not forget, there are young cricketers vying to make it to the Mumbai U-16 team through performances in the Harris Shield.
Defending champions Rizvi Springfield coach Raju Pathak felt MSSA was ruining careers of budding cricketers "We lost four crucial hours. They could have easily postponed the match if they wanted to. MSSA is not providing a platform, but ruining careers of these budding, young cricketers. There are talented kids in both the teams, and couldn't get a chance to showcase their talent in the stipulated time," he said.
* 1st SF: Rizvi Springfield (Bandra) 1st inns 102-1 vs Shardashram Marathi (Dadar)
* 2nd SF: Anjuman I-Islam (Urdu) 1st inns 112 all out vs IES V N Sule Guruji English (Dadar)