The Bombay high court on Wednesday allowed the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to hold the May 1 Indian Premier League (IPL) match between the Pune and Mumbai teams in Pune, according to the original schedule.
A bench of justices VM Kanade and MS Karnik allowed the BCCI’s plea “considering the practical problems which may arise in changing the venue of the May 1 match at such a short notice.”
The BCCI’s plea follows the high court’s April 13 order directing them to shift all IPL matches out of Maharashtra from April 30.
While the BCCI has already conducted a meeting and decided on alternate venues for twelve out of the 13 matches that are to be shifted out, it came to court seeking permission for just the match on May 1.
It told the high court that it was “humanly impossible” to make the logistical changes for the May 1 match between Rising Pune Supergiants and Mumbai Indians.
Appearing for BCCI, senior counsel Rafiq Dada argued that the Pune franchise has “home matches” against Gujarat Lions on April 29 and against Mumbai Indians on May 1 and As the two matches are so close together, it is impossible to shift the match, make alternate lodging and boarding arrangements, shift broadcast and production equipment in such a short span of time.
BCCI argued that it was an “accepted international practice for there to be a two day gap between matches in order to enable the players and the crew to travel, practice, and also for shifting TV production equipment etc.”
Advocate Dada argued that the initial schedule was fixed on the understanding that the two matches in question will be held in Pune itself. And “since the first home match for Pune was scheduled at 8pm. on April 29, it would be impossible to shift out the next match scheduled for May 1 and make new arrangements in just one single day.”
He thus, urged the court to make an exception and modify its order.
The petitioners though, objected to BCCI’s arguments claiming that the high court had anyway given it 15 days to make alternate arrangements and that the water situation in Maharashtra had worsened since the last order.
However, the court held that it was “satisfied with the BCCI’s submissions that it may not be possible to shift the May 1 match out of the state in just one day,” and allowed the plea “as a way of exception.”