SA worried over major split in world cricket

Published: Thursday, November 29, 2001, 22:32 [IST]
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Johannesburg: "Indians push cricket closer to civil war" was how one newspaper described it as the media in this country keenly followed the developments in the stand off between the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the International Cricket Council (ICC). The news of batsman Virender Sehwag's inclusion in the 14-member squad for the first Test against England at Mohali was given extensive coverage by the print and electronic media alike with most reports suggesting that world cricket was headed for a major split. "Time bomb clicking in world cricket" wrote the 'Pretoria News' while the Mercury of Durban headlined its story "Major split in world cricket looms" The national SAFM radio station broadcast an interview with its New Delhi correspondent Rana Senn who told South Africans that Indians were very angry at the treatment meted out to their players by Mike Denness during the second Test between India and South Africa in Port Elizabeth. He said Indians were not prepared to be treated shabbily. Some of the news bulletins also carried sound bites of BCCI president Jagmohan Dalmiya on the selection of Sehwag and that India would not be dictated to say whether he will be included in the final line-up or not. The Mercury published an article from London, which said that Dalmiya was pushing for a split in world cricket. The report stated a split in world cricket had been concern of administrators for generations. "Now there are real concerns", the report said, "that BCCI president Jagmohan Dalmiya, the former ICC president, will try to use the Sehwag dispute as a pretext for launching an Asian breakaway from world cricket's governing body." "To many in Asia, which boasts major cricket powers in India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, all of whom form the Asian Cricket Council (ACC), the fact that the world game is still run out of Lord's is incomprehensible. "Sri Lanka has so far refused to offer whole-hearted backing to Dalmiya's stand over Sehwag but his powers of persuasion should not be under-estimated. "He has a receptive audience in Asia where many are angered by the actions of match referee and former England captain Mike Denness who issued bans to five other Indian players including national hero Sachin Tendulkar in the second Test in South Africa. "This provoked charges of racism which in some quarters were compounded by Denness' failure to take action against even one South African in the same match." Generally many of the South African newspapers have sided with the ICC and have called on the world body to impose sanctions not only against India, but also against South Africa, for agreeing to go-ahead with the last "Test" between India and South Africa in Pretoria against the wishes of the ICC. Extras:
'Most players are involved in cheating'
'I don't want to be in news for wrong reasons'
It's sad, says Fleming; Steve Waugh shuts up
Sehwag showdown sends game into tailspin

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