Far from yielding to the threats of the Shiv Sena, Cricket Australia (CA) on Thursday championed the need for strong cricketing ties between the two nations.
Speaking to Hindustan Times from Melbourne, CA spokesman, Peter Young, said: “If cricket can be used for improving ties between the two nations, then there should be more of it.”
Young’s reactions come in the wake of the Sena threat that it would not let Australia cricketers play in India.
The party had issued the warning in retaliation to the violent attacks on Indian students in Australia.
The threat may have caused concern in the Australian government with Foreign Minister, Stephen Smith, briefing the CA on the matter, but the cricket body is still keeping an open outlook.
“We take any threat to Australian sportsmen and sportswomen travelling overseas, or playing overseas, very seriously,” Smith had told reporters in Canberra earlier in the day.
But Young said, “India and Australia have shared long and fruitful ties not just in cricket but in all walks of life. Be it cross-cultural, financial or in other sporting events, the relationships has been very long and we wish that it continues.”
Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray had said that activists would target lucrative Indian Premier League games involving Australia cricketers in Mumbai.