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March 18, 2009
The IPL's schedule remains in flux, its chairman Lalit Modi has said, with the situation "changing by the minute". The central government is yet to respond to the IPL's re-revised schedule, sent on Tuesday, though some of the states where matches are to be held are reported to have sent in their feedback.
The schedule does not list any matches for Jaipur and Visakhapatnam (Vizag); Delhi, as already reported, has also been dropped from the roster. "Vizag is out," Modi said. "Jaipur we had scheduled games for, but the home ministry has asked them to be removed because they have issues about providing the para-military forces. It is now between the home ministry and the Rajasthan government. It's the same case with Delhi."
However, the Delhi cricket association (DDCA) president Arun Jaitley said there was a possibility of Delhi retaining some matches. "Some matches can still be worked out, we are in touch with [Delhi] chief minister Sheila Dikshit and the police," Jaitley said. "Some matches currently planned for Gujarat could be shifted to Delhi. We have proposed new dates for matches in Delhi only after May 6." Delhi has elections on May 7.
The list includes two matches in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, to be played by Kings XI Punjab. The Himachal state police had written to the state cricket association guaranteeing security arrangements for the two games, scheduled on May 1 and 3. It also includes seven matches in Ahmedabad (three for Delhi Daredevils and four for Chennai Super Kings) and four in Nagpur - three for Rajasthan Royals and one for the Daredevils.
Under the tentative schedule the home-and-away format has largely been dispensed with as more venues have been drafted in to overcome the security issues. The four teams to have all seven "home" games are Mumbai Indians, Deccan Chargers, Kolkata Knight Riders and Bangalore Royal Challengers.
India's home minister, P Chidambaram, said a decision would be taken soon after the Ministry received feedback from the state governments on the revised schedule. "The last I heard was yesterday [Tuesday] morning they submitted a revised schedule," he said in New Delhi. "The revised schedule has been sent to all the state governments concerned. We've asked them to give their comments and views as early as possible."
There was, however, some good news for the IPL on Wednesday with the Cricket Club of India agreeing to stage the Mumbai Indians' league games at the Brabourne Stadium, which it owns. The venue had been the subject of dispute, with the CCI's constitution ruling out some of the IPL's staging prerequisites - including barring non-members from sitting in the pavilion.
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