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Pune Pitch Curator Seen Giving Inside Information in Sting Operation Ahead of India-New Zealand ODI

Another huge controversy has hit India cricket as this time Pune Pitch Curator Pandurang Salgaoncar was seen giving inside information to reporters disguised as bookies

Cricketnext Staff |October 25, 2017, 11:25 AM IST
Pune Pitch Curator Seen Giving Inside Information in Sting Operation Ahead of India-New Zealand ODI

New Delhi: In what could snowball into a major controversy, Pune's Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium's pitch curator Pandurang Salgaoncar was seen giving inside information to reporters disguised as bookies, in a sting operation done by India Today.

This comes just hours before India lock horns against New Zealand in the second ODI of the three-match series at the same venue. Pandurang Salgaonkar can be seen on camera talking where he revealed that the pitch will be a high scoring one and that even a score in excess of 337 runs could be chasable.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and International Cricket Council (ICC) rules state that no one — other than the officials — can come inside the stadium or inspect the pitch for that matter. However, Salgaoncar can be seen in the sting operation footage, allowing the India Today reporters to look at the pitch ahead of the international match.

When asked by the India Today reporters on whether unauthorised persons can reach the playing surface, Salgaoncar can be heard saying that such a thing is not allowed by the BCCI or the ICC.

When asked that couple of players wanted some bounce on the wicket, then Salgaoncar boasted 'it will be done'. He also mentioned the fact that the wicket will be a 350+ wicket and the team batting second can also chase down the target as it will be a batting paradise.

Reacting to the developments, BCCI's acting President CK Khanna told Cricketnext that action would be taken on against the curator if he is found guilty.

"The matter has come to our notice and we are looking into the details. Too early to announce quantum of punishment, but BCCI has a zero tolerance policy towards corruption and fixing and strong action will be taken if found guilty," BCCI acting President CK Khanna told Cricketnext.

While another BCCI official, who didn't want to come on record said that: This is completely uncalled for and every BCCI accredited member is well aware with the rules and regulations and about the security and entering the field of play, so such an incident should not have occurred under any circumstance. There is no way that such a lapse can be justified if it has happened. Strict action will be taken if found guilty," the official said.

The last time India played at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune, the ICC labelled the pitch 'poor', as the first match of the three-Test series between India and Australia had ended in the post-tea session on the third day. Spin wizard Shane Warne had famously referred to the surface as an ‘eighth day wicket’ on the first day of the match itself.

Incidentally, curator Pandurang Salgaoncar spoke to Cricketnext on Tuesday and said that he is confident of avoiding a similar fate this time as India play New Zealand in the second ODI on Wednesday.

Speaking to CricketNext, Salgaoncar had said that he is certain that the pitch will play well and there will be no reason to complain about playing conditions. “It will be a good cricket pitch and we will have a good match. I am not allowed to speak to the media and this is all I can say at this point in time,” he said.

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Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4659 119
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 England 4366 104
4 South Africa 3177 102
5 Australia 3270 99
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 8366 270
2 Australia 6986 269
3 England 5568 265
4 South Africa 4720 262
5 India 9349 260
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