Unpleasant remarks of Modi may keep BCCI friendship with ADCC short-lived

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India’s new-born friendship with the Abu Dhabi Cricket Council (ADCC) could be short-lived after one of their senior officials Lalit Modi left many of the Sheikhs and government officials of the Gulf state fuming following an incident during the first match between Pakistan and India on April 18.

‘The News’ has learnt from sources in Abu Dhabi that the Abu Dhabi government officials and obviously the ADCC are not very happy with the Indian board after Modi created a scene during the incident.

“Since President Pervez Musharraf and other dignitaries attended that first game the security was on a high alert. Modi was stopped by the security officials when he came to the stadium and after being made to wait for a while he got frustrated and angry and made some unpleasant remarks about the organisers and Sheikhs which were conveyed to them,” a source said.

“It was not a pleasant scene at all and it got worse when the organisers got to know about Modi’s behaviour and he was even told by his board President Sharad Pawar not to go to the area of the prize distribution ceremony after the second game,” the source added.

“The Abu Dhabi people, apparently, have taken very serious note of the incident and they’ve conveyed to the Indian board that they are not keen to welcome the Indian team anymore which is one reason why this idea of having a tri-series has been shelved for a while now.”

According to more details, the issue has got so serious that the Indian board is rushing I.S. Bindra, its senior vice-president, to Abu Dhabi to pacify the organisers and top officials to clear the air.

“Modi has got his board into a tight situation with the locals who as it is didn’t organise the tournament to make money. They really don’t need the money as they’ve plenty of it. But they are not happy at all with the unbecoming behaviour of Modi who, they point out, has behaved all along as if he was running the show,” the source added.

Other Indian board and the International Cricket Council (ICC) officials were also stopped by security personnel during the first game because of the high-alert security around the stadium.

The interesting part is that apparently a few officials within the Indian board are supporting Modi and few days back their secretary Niranjan Shah had told the media that it was the first time he was hearing about a tri-series being planned later this year in Abu Dhabi.

Shah’s statement came in response to a question by Indian journalists about Pakistan saying it would not be playing the tri-series due to its hectic commitments.

On Tuesday Bindra contradicted Shah by admitting that there were plans to host a tri-series featuring Pakistan, India and Australia in September which had been shelved now for various reasons. Apparently, of those reasons being Modi’s behaviour which has led to a fallout with the local organisers.

“As it is it was not possible for the organisers to host any tournament in September when it would be Ramazan and also when the weather is very hot in Abu Dhabi. But it is also a fact that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has given in writing to the ADCC chief patron that they’ll support any event in Abu Dhabi by participating in it,” the source disclosed.

He said it was surprising in this background that Shaharyar should now back out of playing in Abu Dhabi later this year.

Modi, who heads the Indian board marketing committee, has played a lead role in selling of TV rights for the off-shore games planned for the next five years by India including 15 against Pakistan to the Zee Television for 217 million dollars.

Source:The News

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This entry was posted on Sunday, May 7th, 2006 and is filed under General.

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