IPL 2013 news March 4, 2013

Decision on Pune's home ground in a 'day or two'

ESPNcricinfo staff

A decision on Pune Warriors' home games in the upcoming IPL is set to be taken in the next couple of days, with negotiations currently on among all stakeholders. The franchise hopes to play its matches at the Subrata Roy Sahara stadium in Pune which is currently the subject of dispute.

"Both Sahara and MCA [Maharashtra Cricket Association] stuck to their guns, but with the IPL set to start in less than a month, the final decision will be made in a day or two," a BCCI insider revealed after a meeting between IPL governing council Rajeev Shukla, MCA president Ajay Shirke and Abhijit Sarkar, corporate communications chief of the Sahara group and director of the group subsidiary that owns the Pune franchise. While Sarkar and Shukla met in New Delhi, Shirke joined them through video conference since he is in the Netherlands for business commitments.

The Sahara group and the MCA have been in a dispute over title rights of the newly built stadium at Gahunje in the outskirts of Pune. After the MCA covered the name of the stadium that read 'Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium' in January for alleged default over payment of the contract, Sahara group officials moved the Bombay High Court over "termination of agreements".

Though the court case doesn't have any direct relation with hosting of the Sahara-owned team's home games in Pune, the business conglomerate has expressed its desire to play their home games at other venues. However, with no valid reason for shifting the games out of Pune, the IPL organisers find themselves in a quandary over the issue. With the IPL set to begin on April 3, time indeed is running out for them.