IPL 2018: BCCI picks four standby cities for CSK games due to Cauvery turmoil | cricket | Hindustan Times
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IPL 2018: BCCI picks four standby cities for CSK games due to Cauvery turmoil

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has shortlisted Visakhapatnam, Trivandrum, Pune and Rajkot as standby venues to host Chennai Super Kings’ IPL 2018 home games.

cricket Updated: Apr 11, 2018 20:14 IST
KV Lakshmana
According to sources, Visakhapatnam is front-runner among the four cities -- the other three being Trivandrum, Pune and Rajkot -- to host Chennai Super Kings’ IPL 2018 home games.
According to sources, Visakhapatnam is front-runner among the four cities -- the other three being Trivandrum, Pune and Rajkot -- to host Chennai Super Kings’ IPL 2018 home games. (AP)

Protests against central government for its failure to set up Cauvery Management Board have unnerved the BCCI which is reportedly shifting IPL matches out of Chennai. The city returned to the roster after a gap of two years, hosting Tuesday’s game between Chennai Super Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders. (IPL 2018 FULL COVERAGE)

BCCI sources told Hindustan Times that “police seem to be unable to handle the situation. A final decision is likely to be taken by tonight”.

PTI added that four venues have been kept on standby. They are Visakhapatnam, Thiruvananthapuram, Rajkot and Pune.

READ: IPL 2018 matches moved out of Chennai amid Cauvery protests: Reports

“We are thinking on the lines of shifting the IPL matches from Chennai. There are four alternative venues that BCCI has kept ready. They are Visakhapatnam, Trivandrum, Pune and Rajkot. CSK can play their matches at these venues,” Vinod Rai, head of BCCI Committee of Administrators, told PTI.

On Tuesday, thousands of protesters had descended upon the stadium and choked the surrounding areas. But the police managed to clear and sanitise a route for the players’ vehicles.

Agitation outside the stadium on Tuesday turned violent with videos of protesters bashing up cricket fans and spectators going viral on social media. Violence was condemned by superstar-turned-politician Rajinikanth who had been supporting the shifting of IPL matches and had even asked CSK players to wear black bands. He called for stringent and tough laws against violent protesters.

Soon, the film fraternity that has joined the Cauvery protests slammed Rajinikanth and questioned his commitment to the cause.

READ: IPL 2018: Cauvery protesters throw shoes, removed by police during CSK-KKR game in Chennai

“Rajinikanth is speaking on the orders of someone else. He has been told to give a statement on the attack on policemen and he is doing so,” said Seeman, a Naam Tamizhar Katchi leader and film actor. “Why didn’t Rajinikanth speak when a police inspector kicked a motorcycle rider, whose pregnant wife died after falling?” questioned Seeman.

He later said, “We will protest tomorrow. The April 20 match won’t happen.”

“Some miscreants may have infiltrated into the crowd and indulged in violence to give the protests a bad name,” said Amir, a director and producer.

Among those present at a news conference by the film fraternity in Chennai on Wednesday included director Bharatiraja.

The mood of the protesters is turning against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the protesters said they will definitely show black flags to the PM, said Bharatiraja.