Australian spin wizard Shane Warne Thursday said it is a shame that the second edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) will not be played on its home soil.
Warne said the IPL starting April 18 will be "nothing like if it was in India" after it was switched this week to South Africa following concerns that security forces in India would be too stretched to adequately cover both the general elections and the IPL.
"It is a shame we're not in India, it would have been nice to be there," Warne, captain and coach of last year's champions Rajasthan Royals, was quoted as saying in the Daily Telegraph.
"It won't be the same as it being in India, but hopefully the South African people will get behind it and turn up to the ground and make it a great spectacle."
Warne said much of the planning for the season had to be quickly overhauled, with the eight-team league now playing in unfamiliar territory.
"We've done three months of planning about itineraries and practice matches and all sorts of things. We were all set to go," Warne said.
"We started planning for England over the weekend and now we're planning for South Africa."
Warne said the Rajasthan Royals would play some practice matches in Cape Town to get familiar with the conditions. And while he doubted the sheer number of fans that the first IPL season attracted in India would show up this time, Warne was anticipating good support in South Africa.
"South Africa loves sport, they're very passionate about their sport. Hopefully they get some good crowds," he said. "But, it'll be nothing like if it was in India."