It may have taken MCA president Ravi Savant only a few minutes to convince BCCI president N Srinivasan to shift the warm-up match (involving the visiting England side) from Bandra-Kurla Complex to Navi Mumbai, but make no mistake, there was a lot of politicking behind the scenes.
Savant, who recently took over the reins of the Mumbai Cricket Association, met Srinivasan at the BCCI headquarters on Wednesday. And his wish was granted. “The BCCI president heard us out. We told him it would be difficult for us to hold the warm-up match at BKC due to security reasons and a few other factors. He was fine with it. Also, the DY Patil Stadium is in Navi Mumbai, which comes under our jurisdiction, and we want to give the people there an opportunity to see an international side play,” Savant said on Wednesday.
So what made Srinivasan change his mind? Senior Congress leader DY Patil, who owns the stadium, is believed to have made a request. Patil is now the governor of Tripura. And his son Vijay Patil is an MCA vice-president. “A few politicians also rang up Srinivasan,” a source said.
The past week witnessed a tug of war between MCA and BCCI officials. The local body was keen on hosting the tie at DY Patil Stadium, but the BCCI wanted to go ahead with BKC. Earlier this week, a member of the England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) recce team had told this paper that he and his colleagues had not objection playing in Navi Mumbai, but wanted the BCCI to take the final call.
CIC to become technical committee?
The Mumbai Cricket Association’s Cricket Improvement Committee (CIC) is likely to be changed to technical committee. According to Savant, MCA is planning to scrap the CIC and have a committee on the lines of BCCI’s technical committee that would work on the improvement of the game in Mumbai.