‘Unacceptable’: Sunil Gavaskar Says Puddles in Old Trafford Field Ahead of India-Pakistan Match
Sunil Gavaskar has questioned the apparent lack of rain preparedness of England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for the World Cup and asked why the entire field at Old Trafford was not covered when it rained.
Rain threat looms large over the India-Pakistan match in Manchester. (Image: BCCI)
Former India captain and batting legend Sunil Gavaskar has questioned the apparent lack of rain preparedness of England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for the World Cup as rain threat looms large over India’s marquee clash with Pakistan on Sunday.
Calling the ECB’s inability to have the cricket grounds fully unacceptable, he expressed frustration at the puddles that had formed in the field, outside the 30-yard circle that is covered, after it rained heavily on Friday and Saturday.
"Terrible (Ground not covered on Saturday). Unacceptable. This is a big tournament. You know the conditions in England and not to have that (extra covers) is absolutely unacceptable in my view,” he told India Today.
Citing the example of Sri Lanka, where the entire ground is covered, he asked why England can’t follow the same practice. He said even in Kolkata the ground is fully covered.
“England often tells other countries what they should be doing in cricket. England should be the one that should have it because it rains and rains regularly. You can't have a situation where thousands of people come from different parts of the world and sit here and the game does not start," he added.
Earlier, Sourav Ganguly had also questioned the practice of not covering the entire field of play and said World Cup officials should use the light covers and cover the entire ground.
Rain has played havoc with the World Cup as four matches have already been washed out, and the forecast for India’s clash with Pakistan is also not bright, with light rain predicted throughout match hours.
With the Old Trafford ground taking a lot of water due to the rain in the lead up to Sunday, the wet patches are going to be a cause for concern if the wet weather persists.
Stressing that the International Cricket Council should withhold the money that ECB gets from hosting the India-Pakistan match if it gets washed out, Gavaskar said ICC should take punitive action against the host board.
Thousands of fans have reportedly travelled to Manchester from across the globe for the India-Pakistan match. Tickets for the match was sold out within minutes of ticket window opening and fans are even reportedly willing to resell their tickets.
"Well, ECB (is responsible). ECB is the one that runs the game here. The Lancashire county cricket club comes under its jurisdiction. So it's the ECB's responsibility," Gavaskar added.
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