NEW DELHI'S STADIUM LOSES BATTLE TO HOST INTERNATIONAL CRICKET

The Feroz Shah Kotla has been banned from hosting any international matches until the end of 2010 after the abandonment of a one-day international between India and Sri Lanka on 27th December.

The match was called off after 23.3 overs during which Sri Lankan players received several blows due to severely varying bounce.

The International Cricket Council's report stated that the pitch was "dangerous" and should be classified "unfit" but the ICC has not ruled out a return to Kotla for the 2011 Cricket World Cup.

Dave Richardson, the ICC's General Manager of Cricket said: "The frequency of the misbehaving deliveries and the excessive degree of variation - had the potential to inflict serious injury to the batsmen.

“Therefore the pitch that was prepared for the above match was 'dangerous' and should therefore be classified as 'unfit'."

Richardson also pointed out that this was the first time the Feroz Shah Kotla pitch had been rated as unfit and that the ground has a long successful history of hosting international cricket.

The Delhi & Districts Cricket Association (DDCA) welcomed the decision as the Kotla was not scheduled to host any international matches till December 2010.

Chetan Chauhan, the DDCA Vice President and former India Test player, said: "Venkat Sundaram is already working on getting the tracked fixed for the IPL and then after the event gets over we will get assistance from ICC's pitch consultant in further improving the pitch's condition so that we will be ready for the World Cup."

ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat insists that the venue will be ready for the World Cup and said: "This ground is one of the world's iconic venues and it's imperative it stages matches [at] the game's biggest tournament."

The stadium is set to host four games at the 2011 World Cup, from 19th February to 2nd April.

Posted on 21/01/2010