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kban1

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Supreme Court: Politics has spoiled cricket
« on: January 14, 2006, 03:13:19 AM »

http://cricket.indiatimes.com/articleshow/1371692.cms

SC: Politics has spoiled cricket

DHANANJAY MAHAPATRA

TIMES NEWS NETWORK

NEW DELHI, Jan 13: With the selection drama over Sourav Ganguly occupying huge media space over the last few weeks, the Supreme Court also found something to say on the ways of Indian cricket.

"Politics played by selectors has spoiled cricket and the stature of the Ranji Trophy has gone for a six," a three-judge Bench comprising Chief Justice Y K Sabharwal, Justice C K Thakker and Justice R V Raveendran said on Friday.

The issue - two teams selected for the Ranji Trophy by two rival factions of the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association. The worrying factor - the two teams, supposed to be the selected from among the best talent available in the state, did not have a single player in common.

"Given this scenario, can one rule out extraneous considerations getting precedence over talent? Obviously such teams are not selected on merit. What is the casualty - the game. This is the state of affairs," said the Chief Justice expressing deep anguish over the development.

Allowing the present state Ranji team to complete its scheduled matches, except the one-day fixtures, the Bench fixed January 30 to adjudicate the dispute between the factions headed by Rajinder Zar and Anurag Thakur, son of former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal.

Getting a little emotional, the Bench challenged counsel for both factions by asking: "Can anyone dispute what we said? Your team and their team have nothing in common. We are trying to draw everyone’s attention to the sorry state of affairs in sports."

There is too much of money in cricket these days but for whose benefit, asked the court.

"At some point of time, there should be some soul searching by all. There is so much of money that sports itself has become a casualty," it added.

"That is why the Ranji Trophy has lost its past stature. It once used to be the stepping stone to international cricket," the CJI said.

The Zar faction had rushed to the SC challenging a recent high court decision staying its registration and putting in jeopardy the prospects of the team selected by it to play the rest of the matches in the Ranji Trophy matches. 
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