KCA’s plans to host India-West Indies ODI at Kochi draw ire from footballers, politicians
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KCA’s plans to host India-West Indies ODI at Kochi draw ire from footballers, politicians

The BCCI’s decision to award the Kerala Cricket Association (KCA) the right to host a ODI match between India and West Indies on November 1 has lead to a clash between cricket and football.

cricket Updated: Mar 20, 2018 17:21 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, Kochi
Kerala Cricket Association,India vs West Indies,India vs West Indies ODI
Kochi will host a ODI encounter between India and West Indies in November at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.(HT Photo)

Opposition is mounting over the Kerala Cricket Association (KCA)’s plans to host the India-West Indies ODI in November at Kochi, with former Union Minister Shashi Tharoor stating that the association’s move was ‘suspect’.

Tharoor, Thiruvananthapuram MP, said he has already spoken to Committee Of Administrators chief Vinod Rai against the KCA’s “bizarre” decision to transfer a ODI match from Thiruvananthapuram to Kochi, whose ground was last used for the U-17 Football World Cup.

“He has promised to review the matter. KCA’s motive is highly suspect”, Tharoor had tweeted.

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In another tweet, the local MP thanked everyone for the outpouring of support for his firm opposition to KCA’s shifting the ODI to Kochi.

“Turf laid for top-class football would have to be dug up, while a cricket-ready SportsHub stadium in Trivandrum, the best in India, lies idle. Who gains from this suspect decision?’, he asked in the tweet.

Kerala Blasters team member Iain Hume expressed his dismay over the move saying it was upsetting.

“I understand there is lot of cricket in India. But I also understand that there is lot of football in Kerala”.

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Another Blasters key player C K Vineeth said the Jawaharlal Stadium in Kochi is one of six in India that are approved by FIFA, a certification that will take immense effort to obtain again.

When India has been known for being a ‘cricket crazy’ nation, is it really necessary to dig up a football pitch to play a cricket match? #SaveKochiTurf, he tweeted.

Veteran footballers I M Vijayan and C V Pappachan have also come out against the move.

First Published: Mar 20, 2018 16:19 IST