The Chappell-Ganguly saga March 4, 2006

Chappell has acted against the rule book, says Dalmiya


Jagmohan Dalmiya: 'Such onslaught from the coach makes it difficult for the player to concentrate on the game' © Getty Images

Joining issue with the Indian board's ruling faction over Greg Chappell's recent disparaging comments on Sourav Ganguly, Jagmohan Dalmiya, the former board chief, has claimed that Chappell had violated the board's rule book and sought to know the action the BCCI proposed to take against him.

Rubbishing the board's stand that unlike the players, the coach was not covered under any BCCI code of conduct, Dalmiya pointed out that the "Regulations for Players and Officials" adopted by the board in 2000 applied to the coach.

Ridiculing Niranjan Shah, the board secretary, for his comment that the board was helpless in taking action against Chappell for giving the controversial interview to The Guardian, Dalmiya pointed out that the coach was covered under the definition of team official as per the book. Dalmiya claimed that Chappell had violated clause 3.2.9 of the Regulations by commenting upon an international cricketer who had not yet retired from international cricket.

Dalmiya, briefing newspersons after a CAB working committee meeting, claimed that Chappell was repeatedly targeting Ganguly. "The working committee felt that this is not a freak incident," Dalmiya said. "Such things are happening repeatedly. Such onslaught from the coach makes it difficult for the player to concentrate on the game, more so when the cricketer is fighting to make a comeback. We feel the board should have acted against Chappell as per the rule book. And they should not have limited themselves to giving a mere piece of advice to him."

The working committee, which discussed the matter as an emergent issue, passed a resolution authorising Saradindu Pal, the CAB joint secretary, to write to his BCCI counterpart seeking to know the action the Board proposed to take against Chappell for violating the provisions in the said clause.

Dalmiya clarified that the CAB had no intention to use the issue to settle scores with the BCCI which show-caused the former Board chief earlier this week for allegedly failing to furnish enough records and details about the transactions in the PILCOM [organising body of the 1996 World Cup] account. "Ganguly is more important to us than BCCI politics. No harm should be done to him," said Dalmiya.

On whether the current BCCI regime was soft on Chappell while losing no opportunity to crack the whip on Ganguly, Dalmiya replied "What do you feel?"