Cuttack gets two Deccan Chargers games
The storm over the Deccan Chargers games being relocated out of Andhra Pradesh appears to have blown over with the IPL scheduling two matches in Cuttack, which falls in the franchise's "catchment area".
An IPL release said the decision was taken following a series of discussions "and at the request of the Deccan Chargers franchise to host matches in their catchment area to help build a strong fan base".
Lalit Modi, the IPL comissioner, confirmed the move on his Twitter page as well as through an official statement. "The solution was worked out keeping in mind the sentiments of the cricket loving fans of the franchise," Modi said in the IPL release. "The revised schedule now includes the Barabati Stadium at Cuttack as a host venue and I hope that Deccan Chargers fans will come out in large numbers to support their team."
Commenting on the development, Venkat Reddy, the director of operations, Deccan Chargers told Cricinfo, "The decision was taken by the BCCI. Sharad Pawar was busy discussing the issue with the state government. Due to the prevailing political conditions in Andhra Pradesh, and the with there being not much time left for the scheduling to change it was felt to move the matches out of Andhra to the catchment areas which have been eagerly preparing to host some games for a long time. Next year the Deccan Chargers will be back playing the game at home."
"The decision to move two matches from Navi Mumbai to Cuttack, which is our territory, is acceptable to us," V Shankar, the Deccan Chargers chairman told PTI. "In fact, the proposal to have matches in our catchment area came from us."
That Hyderabad would not be hosting any IPL matches in the third season followed a decision of the league to shift all matches scheduled to be held in the state. However, the decision - a response to a separatist movement in Andhra Pradesh that has seen sporadic violence - has sparked outrage in the state and in Hyderabad, the capital, with the regional government demanding a rethink. The franchise had also sent IPL a legal notice and threatened a boycott of the 2010 tournament.
Deccan are the defending champions, having beaten Royal Challengers Bangalore in the final in South Africa last year. The result was a total turnaround from their last-placed finish in the inaugural edition in 2008.
The revised schedule for the Deccan Chargers reads:
March 2: Deccan Chargers v Kolkata Knight Riders - DY Patil Stadium, Mumbai
March 19: Deccan Chargers v Kings XI Punjab - Barabati Stadium, Cuttack
March 21: Deccan Chargers v Delhi Daredevils - Barabati Stadium, Cuttack
March 28: Deccan Chargers v Mumbai Indians - DY Patil Stadium, Mumbai
April 5: Deccan Chargers v Rajasthan Royals - Nagpur
April 10: Deccan Chargers vs Chennai Super Kings - Nagpur
April 12: Deccan Chargers v Royal Challengers Bangalore - Nagpur