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Eden Gardens to hold Sri Lanka ODI in December

cricket Updated: Oct 10, 2009 00:11 IST

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Eden Gardens will host the fourth game of the coming One-Day International (ODI) series against Sri Lanka, its first big match involving national sides in two years.

The match will be played tentatively on Dec 20, Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) president Jagmohan Dalmiya said, describing the development as triumph of the spirit of fair play.

The BCCI's programme and fixtures committee cleared Eden Gardens as a venue for the home series during the day.

Eden hosted its last ODI on Feb 8, 2007, when India took on Sri Lanka. The last Test was played between archrivals India and Pakistan in Nov-Dec 2007. Dalmiya's bete noire Prasun Mukherjee was CAB chief during both the games.

Mukherjee was close to the powers-that-be in the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), with which Dalmiya has been at loggerhead for the past four years.

The BCCI has been citing its rotation policy for allotting ODI and Tests to different venues as the reason why Eden could not be given any match in the last two years. But Dalmiya loyalists have refused to buy the argument, and instead alleged stepmotherly treatment from the parent body.

"We have not received any written communication from the BCCI yet. But the match is tentatively scheduled for Dec 20. I think justice has been done. It's a Diwali gift to sports lovers in West Bengal," he said.

Looking happy in his plush chamber at the Eden Gardens, Dalmiya said the CAB has asked for a review of the rotation policy and hoped it would be done in the future.

"Eden deserves to have a Test also in the coming days," Dalmiya told mediapersons.

But with the stadium, particularly the galleries, undergoing renovation to match the requirements for hosting matches of the 2011 World Cup being hosted by India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, Dalmiya said holding the December match will be a 'big challenge".

CAB sources said large portions of the galleries will have to be kept empty because of the ongoing construction work.