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No Indo-Pak series without telecast: ICC

"This is a worrying situation for us and we are closely monitoring it," Ehsan Mani said.
By Press Trust of India | PTI, Kolkata
UPDATED ON FEB 26, 2005 01:48 PM IST

Adding fuel to the controversy over telecasting of the forthcoming India-Pakistan series, the International Cricket Council chief Ehsan Mani on Tuesday said that without the live telecast the matches would not be allowed.

"This is a worrying situation for us and we are closely monitoring the situation," he said over phone from his London office on the issue.

Emphasising the importance of the telecast, he said as per ICC guidelines every host country has to make necessary arrangements with prescribed number of cameras on the field to provide live feeds to the third umpire for making crucial decisions.

"These live feeds are very crucial as, you know, now-a-days a number of decisions are referred to the third umpire," Mani said.

To a query as to what would be the ICC's stand if the telecasting issue was not settled by the time Pakistani team lands in India and live telecast of the series was not arranged, he said, "We cannot sanction the matches to be held."

He said apart from the requirements of the third umpire there were millions of cricket lovers not only in India and Pakistan but across the world who like to watch these two teams clash and without telecast they will be deprived.

"It will be a disservice to the game of cricket if this India-Pakistan series was not telecast live across the world," Mani said.

"I am surprised that why every time this matter is taken to court at the last moment as earlier also it had happened," Mani said referring to a similar row during the South Africa and Australia series here in October and November.

He said that the ICC was in constant touch with the BCCI in this regard and would be closely monitoring the developments with regard to the arrangements for the live telecast of the matches.

The Pakistan team is scheduled to land in India on February 28 to play three Test matches and six One-Day Internationals but BCCI has not yet awarded the telecast rights due to the stay order passed by the Madras High Court on a petition by Zee Telefilms.

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