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Something’s fishy here

Are league matches in the DDCA league being adjusted or fixed? We don’t know. What we do is that the DDCA is showing matches that haven’t been played as having happened, even awarding points to teams involved in these games. Anam Arsalan reports.

india Updated: Jul 04, 2009 02:02 IST
Anam Arsalan

Are league matches in the Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA) league being adjusted or fixed? We don’t know.

What we do is that the DDCA is showing matches that haven’t been played as having happened, even awarding points to teams involved in these games.

For instance, the DDCA league match between Food Corporation of India (FCI) and the Air India Sports Control Board (AISCB) on June 3, 2009 (Wednesday) was recorded as drawn, with the results column showing the game as a ‘washout’. Incidentally, there was no sign of rain on June 3.

The Subhania Cricket Club and AISCB match on June 1 has the same result, while the AISCB match vs Malviya Cricket Club match dated June 6 has been awarded to Malviya, with the latter winning on run rate, instead of being a walkover. These were never played either.

Now the interesting part is that these were updated as such on the DDCA website, www.ddca.in, but the league page was yanked off after HT began investigating the matter and formally requested the scorecards of the matches concerned from the DDCA authorities. Unfortunately for them, we had downloaded and saved that page already.

DDCA sports committee convenor, Vinod Tihara, refused to produce the scorecards, saying, “I am not going to give you the scorecards as you will do a negative story about us.” An Air India source told HT, “Tihara couldn’t have given you the scorecards, the match wasn’t played. There’s no record.” Another DDCA official said the matches had been ‘adjusted’.

What that means though, no one could elaborate on. And then, there’s the fact that most of the Air India team wasn’t even in Delhi when the June 3 match was supposed to be conducted. On that day, the AISCB team was in Rajnandgaon (Chhattisgarh) playing against a Bihar XI in the Rani Suryamukhi Devi All India Cricket Tournament.

The tournament organisers confirmed this. “Yes, Air India played against the Bihar XI side on the day and won,” said K.K. Bhagri, Organising Committee secretary. Air India team sources said six players left Delhi for the event on June 2 and returned on June 5.

Ask Delhi’s club owners about these ‘results’ and they aren’t surprised --- at least not at the fact that it’s being done. “It is surprising that their scorecard says it was a washout,” said Subhania Club owner Radhey Shyam.

“But it’s not the first time that the DDCA has done such a thing.” For the record, the DDCA is supposed to conduct 540 league games this year and 52 super league games. But it’s still not clear how many are actually conducted.