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Rain plays spoilsport in ticket sales for India-England tie

Written by: Staff

Guwahati, Apr 7 (UNI) It is only 48 hours away from the fifth India-England ODI on April 9, but a rain threat has cast a dampner over the match prospects, reflecting on the sale of tickets.

The weather condition has been gloomy over the past two days and sky can open up any moment. A slate coloured sky and heavy moisture in the air have made the match prediction even more uncertain.

Assam Cricket Association Secretary Bikash Barua told UNI that ticket sales were okay for the first two days. But with the overcast condition the sales had dropped sharply. '' If there is a little sunshine tomorrow, things will pick up, '' he said.

Last night the capital city of Asom witnessed a hailstorm that not only brought the temperature down but also left a layer of white on the green turf of Nehru Stadium.

According to the met office, a cyclonic circulation in Bihar and its adjoining areas had led to the bleak conditions here.

However, if the weather office is to be believed, it is looking to improve as the cyclonic formation has weakened.

But with a drizzle starting this evening also, things hardly look that bright. Barua, however, put up a brave front. '' We will do everything. If needed we will deploy helicopters to dry out the outfield, '' he said.

Ticket sales have hardly picked up with only 7000 tickets being sold of the capacity of 17,800. The district associations, who had purchased the tickets, had also not been able to sell it as Lower Asom goes to polls the very next day after the match. Some of the major districts like Nalbari, Rangiya, Barpeta, Bongaigaon, Kokrajhar, Dhubri and Sonitpur goes to polls on April 10.

The only category that has sold out tickets are the student concession tickets. There is also a demand for free tickets.

The ground itself did not look in great condition and the super-sopper has been working overtime to put things in place.

The fear of cricket fans during the match is also not unfounded considering that the match may not take place for full fifty overs.

BCCI Curator Prabir Mukherjee, who flew into the city today, said, '' The pitch looks good. It will have little dampness early on, '' he said.

But the square was under heavy wraps and it is obvious it will sweat during the next one day and the side batting first will have their job cut out.


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