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Home > Cricket > The Cup > Reuters > Report

BCCI blames media for stirring up unrest

March 20, 2007 15:20 IST

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Indian cricket board president Sharad Pawar has slammed sections of the country's media for stirring up unrest following the national team's shock defeat to Bangladesh in their World Cup opener.

Irate fans hurled stones at a house being built by wicketkeeper Mahendra Dhoni in his hometown of Ranchi and burnt effigies of captain Rahul Dravid and coach Greg Chappell after that defeat.

India rebounded on Monday with a record victory over Bermuda but still need to beat former champions Sri Lanka on Friday to ensure they qualify for the next round.

"A section of the electronic media goes to town on the blame game, trying to find out who is responsible for the defeat. It is not good," Pawar was quoted by local media on Tuesday.

"The media gives disproportionate coverage to cricket and it goes a long way in raising expectations. They praise the team sky high when it wins... sometimes things go wrong."

India's World Cup-frenzy has been fuelled by television channels and media outlets touting the team as favourites. Since their arrival in the Caribbean last month, India's every move has been tracked minute-by-minute.

"Right now what is needed is to lift the morale of the cricketers because they are too tensed. Cricket is a game of chance and luck," said Pawar, who is also an influential central minister.

Local media reported on Tuesday that opener Virender Sehwag's house near New Delhi was put under police security following the attack on Dhoni's house.

"It is the media which made him (Dhoni) into a hero, the attack is most unfortunate."

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