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Home > Business > Business Headline > Report

Dalmiya ridicules ICC sponsors' 'love for cricket'

M Chhaya in Kolkata | January 11, 2003 20:06 IST

However much companies sponsoring the World Cupmight want us to believe that for them it's always cricket first, or that their'dil maange more' (heart desires more) of the game, Jagmohan Dalmiya, president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India,remarked that it's all about money, money,and only money.

"I hear some company [electronics giant LG] saysit's 'always cricket first' for them," Dalmiya told reporters in Kolkata. "But nowit looks at its commercial gains first."

Without naming motorbike manufacturerHero Honda,another ICC sponsor, he continued: "I also hear another one say 'desh ki dhadkan'. I think the dhadkan [heartbeat] is for commercial gain again. Or is their heart beating for the country? I don't know."

The barbs came as the ICC sponsors refused toagree to removetwo restrictive clauses from the World Cup player terms. The Indian cricketers,who have millions of rupees at stake in personal sponsorships, haverejected the two clauses whilesigning the contract. The ICC is yet to announce its acceptance of thealtered contract.

"There is a third one [Pepsi] saying 'yeh dil maange more' [the heart desires more]. Now what does it want more? It's all about commercial gain," Dalmiyaquipped.

He said it was not the Indian players but the ICC sponsors who were engaging in ambush marketing. "If they [the companies]are so interested in cricket,they should ensure that cricket is not restricted by commercial considerations."

Dalmiya, however, said two of the three principal ICC sponsors had sounded him out aboutextending certain concessions to the Indian players. "I'm expecting them to come up with something positive soon,"he said, but refused to divulge thenames of the two companies.

LG, Hero Hondaand Pepsi arethe principal sponsors of the World Cup.

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