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Thatscricket - Women's - News - 'Lack of funds hampering progress of womens game'

Published: Saturday, July 6, 2002, 23:53 [IST]
 
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New Delhi: In the absence of a permanent sponsor, the Indian women's cricket team is going through a hard time. And it was evident when the captain of the side Anjum Chopra said that lack of sponsorship was proving to be a hurdle for promotion of women's cricket.[an error occurred while processing this directive]"We don't have a permanent sponsor. And we lack money for promotion of women's cricket in India," she said before the team's departure to Mumbai enroute to London early on Saturday for a 45-day long England tour.During the tour, India will play in a triangular series against England and World Champion New Zealand besides a two-match Test series against the hosts. Apart from a permanent sponsor, the captain said staging more matches could help the side financially. "More matches need to be played in India and abroad. Diverting funds from other sports and events to women's cricket does not auger well for the team," Chopra said.While BCCI, Indian men's cricket Board, earns millions through sponsorship, telecast rights and endorsements, the Women's Cricket Association of India (WCAI) is striving hard for funds to stage matches.Despite performing admirably in the recent home series against England and away series against South Africa, where the team was sent at its own cost, WCAI is still on the lookout for a permanent sponsor. Sahara India, that signed the biggest ever sponsorship deal in the history of world cricket when it endorsed the Indian men's team, came forward to help the eves as well when it decided to sponsor the team, though only for the England and Ireland tour.However, chief executive officer of Air Sahara, Uttam Bose, who announced the deal on Friday, said the term could be extended in future. "This is just the beginning. We may extend the contract," he said.He, however, admitted that despite fine performances by Indian eves, the team could not gain a sponsor though the WCAI had pursued a number of organisations for the purpose. Buoyed by the team's association with Sahara India, WCAI secretary Anuradha Dutta said that with the help from sponsors and recent performances, Indian women's cricket hopes to get its due recognition."India's recent performance has indeed helped the team come of age. Now more and more people are convinced that Indian eves are capable of doing better in international matches like their male counterparts."PTI

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Thatsspecial: English Summer
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