Should the IPL be held as scheduled? March 12, 2009

To play or not to play?

Is the decision to give the go-ahead to the IPL right, given the risks involved in the wake of the Lahore attack and the implications that any untoward incident during the tournament will have?

"I don't understand why some players have issues about security only when they are playing for their country" © AFP

Arjuna Ranatunga
former president of the Sri Lanka cricket board
It is a decision the Indian government and the IPL should take since it is private tournament. It is their responsibility. Terrorism issues are all over the world, but if the government is 100% sure and gives the assurances, then I don't think other countries should grumble about if the IPL should go on not.

What I don't understand about some of the foreign players is that when they are playing for their country they have issues about security, but when it comes to something like the IPL, where the money is big, they aren't all that concerned. I cannot understand these double standards.

The Asian countries should get together and sort out security issues, otherwise I fear we may get into a big mess in the future.

Darrell Hair
former ICC Elite Panel umpire
Personally I would not go to India if I were a player or an umpire, especially after the Mumbai blasts last year and the people trying to ambush the convoy of the Sri Lankan team in Lahore recently.

Bishan Bedi
former India captain
This is no time for cricket. Elections are far more important. God forbid if one foreign cricketer is killed the damage done will be irreparable. Even without any elections last year there was a bomb blast in Jaipur. The security forces will be focused on the general elections. No one can guarantee foolproof security even the government of India.

We've got to be sensible - there is no point shouting the security has been increased ten-fold. Also I don't understand why the IPL does not want FICA on board to oversee the security measures. Even the ICC acknowledges FICA, so why not the BCCI? Also, keeping an eye on the future, the World Cup is coming up in two years, so any sort of mishap can create bottlenecks.

Tim May
Federation of International Cricketers' Associations chief executive
The decision to give the go-ahead to the IPL may or may not be the right one - it is impossible for us to provide a definitive opinion without any knowledge of the security that is to be employed by the IPL. It puzzles me why Mr [Lalit] Modi will not involve FICA in this process. This is not an industrial negotiation, it is a request from international players for an independent security advisor to assess the security arrangements for the IPL in order to provide comfort to the players that it is safe to participate in this event. Why would you deny that peace of mind to the players and their families? So we are back to square one - players will have to guess whether it is safe or not. That doesn't assist IPL at all. All indications are, a number of players will not take such a risk.

In terms of security, India and Pakistan are different. The most recent security advice that we [FICA] commissioned immediately following the Mumbai incident, as to the relevant risks of the two countries, supports that fact. This, of course, does not mean it is not necessary for players to have the right to review the security that is being laid out.

Kepler Wessels
former Chennai Super Kings coach
It should go ahead with the idea of a shorter tournament, which is a good option. I don't believe that one should anticipate something that should not happen in a country like India. The security should and will be increased and I see no reason to postpone or cancel the upcoming tournament.

Interviews by Nagraj Gollapudi