Justice RM Lodha has defended and clarified the panel’s recommendations in the aftermath of BCCI’s decision to cancel the on-going India versus New Zealand series with a Test and five ODI’s to be played. He said the panel has asked the board to only stop disbursing funds to the state associations and not stop routine cricket matters.
“The panel has not asked BCCI to stop funds for routine matters. We’ve asked BCCI to stop giving large funds to state associations,” he told ANI.
“This is a misinterpretation or miscommunication of the E-mail that was sent to the BCCI yesterday (on Monday). We have not frozen any of the accounts. Banks have been directed to ensure compliance of that, routine expenses for matches, cricket activities & administrative matters aren’t restraint,” he added.
Asked to clarify further on the cloud that surrounds the New Zealand tour of India, with England set to visit next, he said there is no cancellation of game or series.
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On their part, a New Zealand spokesperson said nothing has been communicated to them either on that front and as far as the Black Caps are concerned, the tour was going ahead as scheduled. “It’s the first time we’ve heard of it,” the spokesman told the media. “At the moment we are preparing to play the third test at Indore as scheduled,” he added.
Another point of contention between the Lodha panel recommendations and the BCCI is playing of next year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) and Champions Trophy. The schedule has India playing Australia first followed by the IPL and immediately the Champions Trophy in England. However, Lodha panel recommendations say there has to be a 15 day period before and after the IPL which won’t be possible if all three go ahead. This leaves India with the decision to take between the IPL or the Champions Trophy. Justice Lodha handed BCCI a lifeline on this dilemma.
“If Champions Trophy calendar was already settled a year back, our recommendations won’t affect that,” he said.
India have already won the three-match Test series 2-0 after a strong 178 run win at Eden Gardens in Kolkata. The two teams now clash in Indore on Saturday (October 8).