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Absence of stars keeps fans away from action

cricket Updated: Nov 29, 2010 00:48 IST
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Absence of stars such as Sachin Tendulkar and Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the Indian team has affected attendance in their first ODI against New Zealand, the last match to be played at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here.

Being the only stadium in the seven North Eastern states to host international cricket matches, the venue used to draw huge crowd who do not mind spending even chilly nights out to get in due to the early start of the games.

However, the scene was different today for the one-day match between a new-look India under Gautam Gambhir and the Kiwis as attendance was far from satisfactory.

Only about 16,000 tickets were sold for the match in the 23,000 capacity stadium, a senior Assam Cricket Association (ACA) official said.

India give post match presser a miss
The Indian team today gave the post-match press conference a miss as stand-in skipper Gautam Gambhir left the Nehru Stadium immediately after the team's 40-run win over New Zealand in the first of five-match ODI series, here today.

Gambhir, who’s leading the team in place of MS Dhoni, left the stadium after the post-match presentation citing “personal reasons”.

Team support staff Mayank Parikh, when contacted, blamed the ACA authorities and said: “We were waiting in the dressing room after the presentation got over but the local media manager (from ACA) did not approach us.”