Some Indian Premier League (IPL) matches featuring the Kolkata team might be held in Cuttack. Representatives of the team owned partly by Shah Rukh Khan inspected the Barabati Stadium on Monday and didn't rule out a shift from Eden Gardens, adding that things are yet to be finalised.
Nobody wanted to go on record but sources in the team said that all's not well between the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) and the T20 franchise after a dispute over settlement of dues last season. "We are not denying that some matches might be held in Cuttack," said an official on condition of anonymity.
The CAB president, Jagmohan Dalmiya, neither confirmed nor denied this. "There are a few things to be sorted out regarding last year's payments. But the CAB is has no problem in allowing the IPL Kolkata team to host matches at Eden Gardens," he said.
Insiders in the CAB however confirmed that there is some dispute and it's over nonpayment of dues. "The association spent over Rs 7 crore last year and it was supposed to be reimbursed by the team owners. They have given us just 3.5 crore, so this is bound to become an issue."
Team officials said it wouldn't be in the best interests of their players. "In a competition like this, it's important to have home advantage. We'll miss that in Cuttack, not in terms of crowd support, but due to our lack of knowledge of conditions there."
The Orissa Cricket Association (OCA) is doing everything on its part to host these
matches. "It's certain that Barabati will be hosting a few matches involving the Kolkata team. The number is being worked out," OCA president Ranjib Biswal told HT.
The stadium is undergoing a major facelift as well, probably to cater to the needs of IPL matches. Nearly 35 corporate boxes are being built and the seating capacity is being increased to 50,000 from 35,000.