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Pakistan Cricket Board to buy 680 high-priced Delhi one-day tickets

Pakistan Cricket Board to buy 680 high-priced Delhi one-day tickets

Delhi has emerged as the most sought after destination for PakistaniVVIPs, VIPs and celebrities for the upcoming bilateral series as the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has sought almost 700 tickets for the January 6 one-day match here.

This is besides the 1,000 tickets earmarked for fans.

It is the highest number of tickets that the PCB would be buying at any of the five venues hosting the matches, beginning on December 25 in Bangalore. The visiting delegation to Delhi is expected to include ministers, celebrities and businessmen, even though Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari has chosen to go to Kolkata for the second ODI. 

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is also keen to play the perfect host, particularly to the VVIPs and VIPs who would be heading to India from all parts of the world to watch the first India-Pakistan bilateral series in five years. Sources said that the BCCI has told the match-hosting associations to reserve the best seats for these guests, and ensure a constant supply of snacks and beverages for them during the matches.

It was decided at a recent BCCI working committee meeting that four of the five match- hosting associations would reserve 50 tickets for the VIPs as per PCB's request while for Delhi the number was 100. Besides these, the source said, the PCB has sought 30 seats in the VVIP Box, 50 tickets in the highest paid enclosure of the stadium and 500 tickets in general stands of the Ferozeshah Kotla, taking the number to 680.

"The BCCI has told the associations that they should also provide car parking space for these VVIPs and VIPs and ensure that they are served well while watching matches. Preferably, they should be housed in corporate boxes, which are there at all stadiums, and food and beverage services should be close to their enclosure," a top source told Mail Today. At the same time, the Home Ministry has, for the first time, told the BCCI to provide a list of hotels, along with room tariff, where the visiting fans could stay. The source said that the ministry would set up a "police reporting desk" at all the hotels where fans would stay, so that they can keep an eye on them as well as make their stay hassle- free.

At a recent meeting with top BCCI officials in Delhi, home ministry officials spelled out the strict do's and don'ts for the associations that will host the matches, to be played in Bangalore (T20 International, Dec 25), Ahmedabad (T20 International, Dec 27), Chennai (ODI, Dec 30), Kolkata (ODI, Jan 3) and Delhi.

"The BCCI told the association representatives to inform the chief secretary of the state, the state police, and the district magistrate about the match so that they could make the necessary bandobast," the source said." The Board will inform the home ministry about these match details so that it could coordinate with the host states.
A ministry liaison officer will travel with the team throughout the series," he disclosed.

All five associations have been asked to provide a list of hotels to fans for booking rooms. "These hotels, not the ones where the two teams would be staying, should preferably have many rooms so that many fans could stay at one place for easy monitoring." the source said.

"Amongst the details that were mandatory for the associations to submit by December 1 was the room tariff, and name of persons who should be contacted for booking rooms," he said. 

"The ministry explained that it was necessary because it would be instructing the police to set up police desk for fans. This could serve two purposes: assistance for fans and monitor them." The police are taking precaution especially as some Pakistani fans, who had come to watch matches during the previous bilateral series in 2007, stayed back without valid visas." That is why this time fans will get visas on producing match tickets, hotel accommodation, and return tickets to their homes," said the source. "The ministry has specifically told top BCCI officials that these are the obligations and they are to be met by all five associations where matches will be played, besides fixing deadlines for delivery of tickets to the PCB."

We all wanted to be like Pankaj Roy: Ganguly

We all wanted to be like Pankaj Roy: Ganguly

KOLKATA: Former India cricket captain Sourav Ganguly on Monday said his generation of players in Bengal all wanted to be like celebrated Test opener Pankaj Roy when he started playing cricket.

"The modern generation wants to be like (MS) Dhoni, (Rahul) Dravid or Yuvraj (Singh) but when we started playing cricket all we knew was about Pankaj-da," said Ganguly at the launch of a book on Bengal's cricket legend Roy.

Pankaj Roy is best known for establishing the world record opening partnership of 413 runs with Vinoo Mankad against New Zealand at Chennai in 1956, which remained unbroken for 52 years.

The Bengali version of the biography 'Pankaj', written by journalist Gautam Bhattacharya and edited and conceptualised by Roy's son Pranab - also a former Test cricketer - was released by cricketing iconSachin Tendulkar at the glittering function graced by the entire Indian cricket team and a host of Bengali film celebrities and business magnates.

"I never got to see the great one play. I have only heard stories about him. It will be good to know more things about him and his contribution to the sport," said Tendulkar.

Current India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni released the English edition of the book along with Ganguly.
Cricket Kenya picks first chairwoman

Cricket Kenya picks first chairwoman

Cricket Kenya has unanimously elected Zehra Janmohammed as its new chairwoman, the first woman to head a national cricket board.
Janmohammed, a Nairobi-based lawyer, who previously served as a legal adviser to the old Kenya Cricket Association (KCA), was elected unopposed to replace the incumbent Samir Inamdar, who has served for the last seven years.
"I take this opportunity to thank the cricket fraternity for placing their trust for leadership under me," she said.
"I would like to make a covenant of uniting everyone for the benefit of the sport and my only agenda will be to grow resultJanmohammed takes over at a time when the national cricket board is implementing a comprehensive review initiated by the outgoing office following the country's worst performance at the World Cup.
"My short term plans are to ensure both the national under-19 and the senior men's team qualify for the next World Cup," she added.
"Kenya plays Canada in the UAE in March, in a match we need to win to stay in contention for the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand."

New looks for Australian cricket grounds

New looks for Australian cricket grounds

Before the iconic arc of Moses Mabhida held up the Durban sky, there was a grotty grey concrete block masquerading as a football stadium in its place. It was so nondescript that I can barely remember it. But I have vivid recollections of how the new stadium grew each time I went back to Durban. Over three years from 2006, what started as a building site turned into a gleaming white façade.
All over the country, works of art were being erected. Not far from my home in Johannesburg, the calabash shaped Soccer City was being sculpted, in Port Elizabeth the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium was taking the shape of the Sydney Opera House, and in Nelspruit giraffe-shaped supports held together the Mbombela Stadium. It seemed as though the whole country was under construction.
The ten theatres of dreams that were being refurbished, and in some cases created, were for the 2010 Football World Cup. Australia’s Cricket World Cup is still three years away, but there is building going on at three of the four grounds I’ve visited on this tour, and only in Perth is the construction because of cricket.
An ambitious apartment project, which will offer buyers a view of the cricket from their balconies, is about to get underway at the WACA. It is the brainchild of Dennis Lillee and will not be for the average cricket fan. One-bedroom apartments will start at AUD 520,000 with penthouses costing AUD 2.7 million. I’m told property is more expensive in Perth, but for those prices a more than decent abode could be bought in South Africa.
A new grandstand is also being built. Lillee said the two developments will keep Test cricket at the WACA for the foreseeable future while limited-overs matches may be played at a venue like Burswood, which is still under construction. It also means the WACA will not be at risk of substituting its “unique” pitch, as Lillee called it, while other Australian grounds like the Adelaide Oval are moving towards drop-in pitches.
Australian Rules Football, the winter sport, is the moneymaker in these parts and often shares grounds with cricket, the summer sport. It’s because of the popularity of the AFL and the demand for more seats that stadiums are expanding. Both the SCG and the Adelaide Oval will soon have completely different characters, as they become bigger and more modern.

The WACA is no danger of that. Subiaco Oval is the where all the kicking games, including soccer, are played in Perth, and that leaves the WACA solely for cricket. Lillee’s dream is to turn that into a lifestyle, which is why he has been the driving force behind the living complex. It made me wonder if there could ever be a way to do the same in South Africa.
The Wanderers in Johannesburg already has an apartment block next to it and the residents have occasionally been known to get tetchy over the parking situation, the roads being closed and the music and fireworks during a cricket match. While it remains my favourite ground in South Africa, SuperSport Park in Centurion is more homely.
Over the years, SuperSport Park is also the ground that has changed most notably. The wooden chalets on the grass embankment were replaced with brick ones, and two seasons ago a swimming pool and deck were added to the main stand. Apart from occasional flooding of the Hennops River, it would accommodate housing quite comfortably in the area closest to the river.
Other grounds have remained pretty and there seems to be little need for that to change drastically. Kingsmead’s grandstand could do with a lick of a paint, Paarl could use a proper press box instead of single-level scaffolding, and Benoni is long overdue a make-over. But for the rest, if ain’t broke, we don’t fix it.
The other difference, of course, is that none of South Africa’s grounds are used for any other sport. Moses Mabhida was in danger of becoming the first, when it hosted Makhaya Ntini’s farewell match, a disappointing T20 on a slow, drop-in pitch. While the cricket was bland, the spectacle was not.
It was the first time I had been inside the stadium I watched being built, and it was magnificent. But that kind of flash is best enjoyed occasionally. The WACA, whose redevelopment is being confined to one side, seems to know that.
Cricket: Huge changes at Sri Lanka Cricket

Cricket: Huge changes at Sri Lanka Cricket

Come January Sri Lanka Cricket will have a new Chief Executive Officer who will be responsible for all matters pertaining to cricket.
It is learned that the position will be advertised next week.
A senior member of the SLC executive committee said that the present acting CEO Ajith Jayasekera has been moved to handle matters regarding the Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL), but he will handle administration till the vacancy is filled by January 15.
The SLC member said: “The new CEO will be given the task of handling all matters on cricket with his staff keeping with the recommendation of former ICC chief Haroon Lorgat and the executive committee will handle only policy matters.” However, the new CEO will be a person with both cricket and an administrative background, he said.
The position of CEO was earlier handled by Dhammika Ranatunga, Anura Tennekoon and Duleep Mendis.
On Friday (30) the executive committee met Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage and discussed the Lorgat report and the ways to implement its recommendations.
Minister Aluthgamage said: “It is embarrassing to say that till I met the SLC executive committee and discussed about the Lorgat report they had not even planned to discuss the matter. I asked them after spending that huge sum of money to get professional opinion, why they had not taken any steps to implement the Lorgat recommendations.
“I directed the ex-co to ascertain what segments of the report that they could implement from that report and report back to me by the end of December. However I stressed that a strong CEO who should be running the show – not SLC President Upali Dharmadasa and Secretary Nishantha Ranatunga as it is happening now. I directed them to make that move with immediate effect.
“Besides that, I also told the ex-co to reduce its members – it has 22 now –and limit it to about six in keeping with the Lorgat report.”
Another matter that the minister pointed out was that the SLC should have one opinion on the cricket structure – whether it is going to be a club-based structure or a cascading provincial system.
The minister said the recommendations of the Lorgat report would be implemented during next year.

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