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Pawar blames previous regime for delay in bid submitting

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, May 5 (UNI) There was no let up in the tirade against former BCCI chief Jagmohan Dalmiya as Board President Sharad Pawar today blamed the previous regime for the Board's delay in submitting the World Cup 2011 Compliance Manual that almost cost them the event.

Though Mr Pawar stopped short of naming Mr Dalmiya, he said, ''Last year, ICC had sent the Compliance Manual to all its member boards and each country was expected to submit it. But after the change in the Board, we did not get details about it and there was no record for us to see.'' ''It was only when I went to Karachi that I learnt about it, briefed by our friends in the Pakistan Cricket Board. We sat together with them and decided to have Sri Lanka and Bangladesh on board and got in touch with them. There were so many things to do -- get clearance from four federal governments and involve the head of the states. So we missed the first deadline and sought more time from ICC and fortunately we landed the event,'' he told reporters here today.

Earlier, former BCCI President IS Bindra had blamed Mr Dalmia and the previous set-up for not passing on the files and delaying the bid.

Mr Pawar admitted the Board was cagey about getting the event because the joint Australia-New Zealand bid was submitted well in time and it was quite good.

''In fact we learned from their bid. We had to get a number of clearances and we got in touch with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Bangladesh Prime Minister, Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf and Sri Lanka President (Mahinda Rajapakse). The delay was a worry indeed but finally we got it,'' he said.

''In the Dubai meeting, we entrusted Mr Bindra to present the case on behalf of the four Asian countries. He was an experienced man who did it in the last two World Cups in Asia and both he and I personally got in touch with all the ICC members and we won it overwhelmingly.'' ''It was our legitimate right to host the event because ICC had earlier agreed to award every third World Cup to Asia,'' he added.

Mr Bindra, on the other hand, rubbished reports that West Indies agreed to vote for India after BCCI promised financial package for the next year's World Cup in the Caribbeans.

''This is completely misleading. There was no quid pro quo. West Indies knew it was our moral right to host the event and they also realised it was in the best interest of the game.'' On BCCI's plans to play tri-series in West Indies and North America, Mr Bindra said, ''We have an ongoing understanding with the West Indian cricket board and we are committed to popularise cricket in the Caribbeans and the northern hemisphere. That's why we will be playing in places like Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and North America.'' Mr Pawar, meanwhile, informed that BCCI has pledged clean stadiums to the ICC for the 2011 World Cup but with state associations in Delhi and Mumbai already having tie-up with corporate houses, BCCI would request the sponsors not to insist on having their name during the event.

''I know both Delhi and Mumbai associations have tie-up with the corporates. But World Cup is not a BCCI event. So we would request the sponsor not to insist on displaying their names during the event.'' He also revealed that BCCI was planning an international standard stadium here near Maharani Bagh.

''(Delhi and District Cricket Association President) Arun Jaitley, when he was minister, was instrumental behind allotting a 38-acre land to BCCI and though it's not finalised yet, we'll discuss the possibily of a new stadium there,'' he said.

UNI AY PG PM1725

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