Delhi blasts prompt CA to rethink about its tour of India

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Melbourne, Sep 14 (UNI) The serial bomb blasts that ripped New Delhi last night have triggered Cricket Australia (CA) to commission an urgent report from its long-term security advisor to review the safety situation in India before its team's tour begins. Delhi is scheduled to host the World Champions for the third Test on October 29 and it was players from this Australian side who denied to tour Pakistan for the Champions Trophy which eventually had to be postponed until next year.

Australian team's security manager Reg Dickason will work on the report with the Australian Cricketers' Association and CA's public affairs manager Peter Young nad he said he expected a decision would be made ''in the next week or so''.

CA's general manager Michael Brown, will also speak with the BCCI, the Australian High Commission, which is based in New Delhi, and security agencies to gain information on travelling in the country.

''The fundamental principle that always comes first is the safety of the team and the team officials,'' Young said.

''There's a standard process for every tour. Such is the way of the world these days that this process is completed before we go anywhere,'' he added.

A pre-tour assessment has already been done but if the concerns remain Cricket Australia will consider another inspection.

The 15-man Australian squad is due to leave next Sunday and play two warm-up matches in Jaipur and Hyderabad while the first Test will start on October 9 in Bangalore.

Australia A is currently in Hyderabad, about 1500km south of Delhi, preparing for a tri-series with teams from India and New Zealand.

Meanwhile, BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah said though the Board was concerned about the explosions, it still will not make an impact on the series.

One of Cricket Australia's main reasons for its stance on Pakistan for the Champions Trophy and the earlier Test and one-day series, which were also postponed, was the terrorist threats to westerners.

''The specific answer we were given on Pakistan was that it was not safe to go,'' Young said. ''We will take advice on this situation and will make a decision. We expect that to be in the next week or so,'' he added.

The Australian government's updated travel advice for India is ''to exercise a high degree of caution because of the high risk of terrorist activity by militant groups.'' UNI XC RAR RKM HT1050

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