Maharashtra’s loss of IPL matches won’t be Kerala’s gain

Thiruvananthapuram, April 13 (IANS) Cricket buffs in Kerala have no reason to celebrate the Bombay High Court’s order on Wednesday to move out of drought-hit Maharashtra the 13 Indian Premier League matches allotted to the state after April 30.

Kerala Cricket Association president T.C. Mathew told IANS it was “unfortunate and sad” that Kerala will not get a single match because there are no stadiums which can host the ties.

“The only stadium now fit to stage international cricket matches in Kerala is the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi, but a refurbishment is currently on to make it a likely venue for the 17th edition of the U-17 FIFA World Cup that India will host next year,” he said.

“Then there is the brand new, world-class Greenfield Stadium here, but there is no cricket pitch and laying a new one in a few weeks’ time just cannot happen.”

“So, Kerala will not be able to stage any IPL matches that are going to be moved out of Maharashtra,” said Mathew.

The Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium was the home ground of the Kochi Tuskers, an IPL team in 2011, but its franchise was cancelled by the BCCI.

The Bombay High Court ruling came following a public interest litigation that demanded these matches should be moved out of Maharashtra due to severe water scarcity in some parts of the state.

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