The Irani Cup match will not be played at Jaipur. The alternate venue for the match, scheduled from September 21 to 25, would be announced by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) by Tuesday.
The Board’s Ground and Pitches Committee chairman Venkat Sundaram inspected the Sawai Man Singh Stadium (SMSS) facilities on Saturday and decided to move the match out of Jaipur.
“Due to heavy rain, the outfield and pitch are not in the best of conditions and we can’t take the chance for such a big match. It wouldn’t have been possible to get the facilities ready by September 21,” said Sundaram, who submitted his report to the Board.
The Rajasthan Sports Council, meanwhile, sought to clear its role in the episode. According to the RSC spokesman, the Rajasthan Cricket Council had delayed in applying for renewal of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and it led to the present situation.
“The RCA applied for permission to stage the match at the SMSS on July 30. We had informed them on August 9 that they had to come through the proper channel since the MOU between us had expired. We had assured quick and positive response provided they applied to the RSC on the prescribed application,” said the RSC spokesman.
Keeping in mind the interest of cricket in the state, the RCA was granted permission by the state government on September 3 to stage the Irani Cup free of cost but the damage had been done. The state of the outfield and pitch was not ideal and time was too short for the organisers.
It did not take much time for Sundaram to decide the venue was “unfit” to stage a five-day match. According to Board’s sources, Baroda and Visakhapatnam look the best possible venues for the match.
Keywords: Irani Cup