Players not shown disrespect: Shukla

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Pune, Sep 27 (UNI) Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) vice president Rajiv Shukla today brushed aside allegations that the triumphant India T20 team was accorded secondary treatment at yesterday's felicitation function at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.

Speaking to reporters here after the formal inauguration of the Symbiosis Super Shield Twenty 20 Corporate cricket tournament at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium Shukla blamed the media for creating ''unwarranted hype''about politicians stealing the show.

He pointed out that the function was hosted by the Board in association with the state government which had also announced cash awards for the players.

With the exception of Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minsiter R R Patil and Sports Minister Vasant Purke, no other politician was sitting in the front row, Shuukla said. Though Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh had received the team on its arrival at the airport, he was not present at the felicitation function, Shukla said.

The function, he said, was hosted at the behest of BCCI President Sharad Pawar, who is also the NCP chief and Union Minister for Agriculture.

Shukla said it was not possible to accomodate the entire team in the front row and, so, captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was made to sit next to Pawar.

While lauding the India T20 team under the captaincy of Dhoni, Shukla, however, said there should be no room for complacency as India are hosting world champions Australia in the seven ODIs which get underway at Bangalore on Saturday. ''The Team India now has to prove that the T20 crown was not a fluke,'' Shukla observed.

Earlier, former India captain Chandu Borde formally inaugurated the Symbiosis tournament along with Shukla.

Speaking on the occasion, Borde expressed confidence that Team India would give the Aussies a run for their money in the ODIs.

''After the amazing performance in England and the T20 World Cup win, Team India is totally focussed to do well against the Australians,'' he said.

The rapid fire T20 version has added more glamour to the game especially for the youngsters who have to give their hundred per cent in all departments, Borde added.


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