Shame! India deserved to lose abandoned ODI

Published: Tuesday, November 12, 2002, 23:04 [IST]
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Bangalore: In a shocking incident that made all ardent cricket fans and connoisseurs bow their heads in shame the third One-day International between India and West Indies had to be abandoned after crowd trouble at the Madhavrao Scindia Stadium, Rajkot. With India cruising along comfortably at 200 for one, the crowd interrupted the match by hurling missiles. According to reports, Vasbert Drakes and Ryan Hinds were hit by bottles thrown from the stands forcing match referee Mike Procter to suspend play. Though India won the match on a better score on the Duckworth/ Lewis rule, it was unfortunate end to a good match. In fact, India should have lost the match was the refrain of many shell-shocked fans of Bangalore, who were watching or rather enjoying Sehwag's batting on the television.This really brings us to the question of what is happening to the spectators in India? There was absolutely no rowdyism or roguish behaviour during Zimbabwe, England and Australia tours. "Why this sudden bad behaviour during the West Indies One-dayers? This behaviour started in Jamshedpur and the spectators have brought nothing but shame to India," was the reaction of the infuriated common man on the road. "Earlier, one thought bottles rained on the ground only when India was losing - that by itself is a very unsporting behaviour - but why today when India was going along so well," was repeatedly asked by the shell-shocked buffs as they eagerly waited in front of TVs to find out about the fate of the match. "Please don't mistake me, I condemn this kind of behaviour irrespective of the result. Are the Indian spectators so stupid to throw things even when India is winning? Or is there some political overtone to it with the Opposition parties in Gujarat that trying to cause more grief to the CM Modi?" Some others asked. Many of the irritated fans even mooted a possible solution to stop such roguish behaviours. "In the first instance all such rowdy, rogue venues must be cut off from the cricket itinerary. It should be a hard-hitting punishment. Both, the Board of Control for Cricket in India and the International Cricket Council should ban these venues for as long as five years." Some of the other points raised were to fix huge nets in front of the stands as has been done in Bangalore's M Chinnaswamy Stadium. The Karnataka State Cricket Association has put up huge nets at the stadium following crowd interruptions caused by players' reactions; Install cameras in rowdy prone stands. Yes, it will cost money but it will at least not bring further disrepute to the country and the game; If a person is caught disturbing the game, publish his phone, name, house address, employer's name in the newspapers. Chances are such persons may feel happy to have got free publicity but ultimately people will shun such rogues.

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