England tour of India - News - Cricket: India snubs England over playing extra Test
Published: Tuesday, November 20, 2001, 23:53 [IST]
Copyright AFP 2001
Hussain begins Indian tour with a bang
New Delhi: English cricket officials headed for a showdown with their Indian counterparts on Tuesday after India refused to play an extra Test during next year's tour of England.India said it will play only three Tests in England next summer, the same number Nasser Hussain's team its scheduled to play during its current Indian tour.England, however, insisted the Indians had given a written commitment to play four Tests, adding the itinerary was "non-negotiable" at this late stage."We have made all arrangements for the tour and even started selling tickets for the four Tests," England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) spokesman David Clarke said from Bombay."The ECB is adamant India will play all four Tests, the itinerary is non-negotiable."The ECB said the then secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Jayawant Lele, had confirmed in a letter dated April 5 that India will play four Tests and a Limited Overs tri-series also featuring Sri Lanka.But the new dispensation in the BCCI, headed by recently-elected Jagmohan Dalmiya, is clearly not in a mood to oblige the Englishmen.BCCI sources said Dalmiya is upset that England refused to play two extra One-day Internationals in India in January, preferring to stick to the scheduled five.Dalmiya, a former president of the International Cricket Council (ICC), had made the request when he met ECB officials during the ICC meetings in Kuala Lumpur in October.Dalmiya argued that India will play seven matches in the One-day series in England next year if it reached the final, and wanted the ECB to reciprocate the same on its tour of India, BCCI sources said.But when the ECB refused, the BCCI too wanted to scale down its commitments in England."England said its players were busy and needed a rest. Well, our players too need a rest," present BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah said.ECB's Clarke rebuffed Shah, saying, "Since 1998 it has been clear there would be an imbalance in the numbers of games on these two tours. It's too late to change the schedule."If India refuse to budge from its stand, its faces a penalty of $ 2 million introduced recently by the ICC for nations refusing to honour their commitments.