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Rediff.com  » Cricket » India-England World Cup match moved to Bangalore

India-England World Cup match moved to Bangalore

January 28, 2011 00:36 IST

The India-England World Cup group stage match on February 27, which was moved out of Eden Gardens in Kolkata, will now be played at the M Chinnaswamy stadium in Bangalore.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) made the decision following delay in renovation work at the historic Eden Gardens, which boasts of a capacity of 90,000.

ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat informed the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) of the decision, who selected Bangalore as the replacement venue though Chennai was also considered.

It must come as a huge sigh of relief for Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) as all the match scheduled in Bangalore included minnows.

India and England were both scheduled to play Ireland on March 2 and 6 respectively. World champions Australia also had a couple of easy matches at this venue, as they were drawn to play Kenya on March 13 and Canada three days later.

Lorgat pointed out that Kolkata had missed three deadlines already and as such they had to take the decision.

"All venues had ample time in which to prepare for World Cup matches. We had been understanding and had provided extensions to the deadline dates but unfortunately we are now at a point where we must carefully manage our risks.

"The COC had provided venues with a deadline of 30 November 2010 to complete all construction work and then to be match-ready by 31 December 2010. An extension was granted by the ICC for five venues, which were again inspected over the past week. Sadly, Eden Gardens in Kolkata was unable to meet the final deadline date of 25 January 2011.

"The expert report determined that Eden Gardens would not be ready within an acceptable time frame to host the India-England match on February 27," said the ICC chief in a media release.

The Eden Gardens is also scheduled to host three other matches -- on March 15, March 18 and March 20 and it remains to be seen whether those games would go ahead.

An ICC team, comprising stadium consultant Eugene van Vuuren, ICC's general manager-commercial Campbell Jamieson and ICC events manager Chris Tetley, had inspected the Wankhde stadium in Mumbai on Monday and then visited Eden Gardens the next day to check out its status.

The team also visited the three Sri Lanka venues -- Colombo, Hambantota and Pallekele.

While the Wankhede and Sri Lanka venues, which also underwent renovation work, were cleared, the inspection team had reservations about the preparedness of the Eden Gardens.

Of particular concern was the fact that host venue obligations in relation to cricket operations, media, broadcast and sponsorship facilities were not finalized and/or confirmed by the venue.

Harish Kotian