Jagmohan Dalmiya, the president of Bengal Cricket Association (BCA), has accused the International Cricket Council (ICC) of double standards and claimed that Wankhede Stadium should not have got clearance for hosting the World Cup 2011 final by means of hosting a Twenty20 match.
Commenting on reports that ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat was satisfied with the progress of Wankhede Stadium after it hosted a T20 match, Dalmiya argued that it''s not a yardstick as per the Stadium Agreement of the World Cup.
Dalmiya said: "Twenty20 matches at the local level were certainly not a yardstick and that too the matches were played only in February this year. Surprisingly, the ICC experts cleared the venue, going beyond their ambit."
The Wankhede Stadium had hosted the Mumbai Cricket Association's T20 championship semi- final match between the Mumbai Police Gymkhana and Fort Vijay Cricket Club on February 27, in what was its first preparatory match ahead of the World Cup.
"According to the ICC's Stadium Agreement, at least two Tests or ODIs or an entire season of first class cricket or matches at the highest level should have been played six months prior to the commencement of the event," said Dalmiya.
"I would like to tell my friend (ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat) that T20 is not a first class game. There are certain basic requirements that one has to fulfill. If somebody says, I have organized T20, we can only say thank you very much. This is not qualified and, the Wankhede Stadium was passed on the basis of T20, which cannot be and I challenge this that one cannot do it," he added.
Having already accused ICC of conspiracy to take the India-England match away from the Eden Gardens, Dalmiya severely criticized the international cricket body.
Lorgart had earlier said: "I have said earlier there were Twenty20 matches that have been played there and the stadium has been inspected. We have experts whom I can assure you will not pass the stadium unless they are satisfied with its preparedness."
Responding to the above comment by Lorgart, Dalmiya said: "I challenge the ICC''s stand. One cannot do it. I''ve all the records with me to substantiate it. Let them come forward and take my challenge. We want to know who are the (ICC) experts, from where they have come."