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NCA will be shifted if Karna govt fails to give land: Thakur

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Bengaluru :BCCI Secretary Anurag Thakur today made it clear that the National Cricket Academy will be shifted out of the city if the Karnataka government fails to provide land for its expansion by next month.

“I think Karnataka government must look at it (providing land for NCA’s expansion) seriously. If they can’t take a call within the month of September, we have to go out, we have no other option,” Thakur told reporters after the felicitation of Karnataka team for winning this year’s Ranji, Irani and Vijay Hazare Trophies.

Thakur said the BCCI would be forced to shift NCA from Bengaluru and the Board cannot wait to have land in a specific area as suggested by the state government.

“We never wanted to shift NCA from Bengaluru, but we have been forced to do that for not having a full-fledged centre here. Indian cricket cannot wait to have land in a specific area (as suggested by the government),” he said.

Thakur said for the last ten years, the BCCI have been approaching the governments of the day asking for land to take up restructuring plan at the NCA, but to no avail.

“We are very keen to have a full-fledged centre at Bengaluru itself, but now the problem is from the last eight to ten years, I have been knocking at the doors of government to provide us land, and for no fault of ours, there has been no land given to us,” he said.

“We have approached the current and previous governments many times. The officers, I don’t know whether they want NCA to be here or not. If it stays here, I will be more than happy,” he said.

The BCCI Secretary said other governments like Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and Maharashtra were ready to provide land free of cost, whereas the Board is not getting the land from Karnataka inspite of giving money.

Thakur said the Working Group formed to study Lodha panel verdict relating to the IPL spot-fixing scandal will submit its report to the BCCI’s Working Committee on August 28.

“We have finished our report and going to submit that on the (August) 28th. Report has been finalised, sealed within four weeks. I think whatever steps we take we will take in the interest of franchises and Indian cricket fans,” he said.

“If the technology comes close to 100 per cent, we will be very happy to accept it, but if it is not, there we can look at the options whether we can exclude LBW decisions,” he said.

Former captain and commentator Sunil Gavaskar had also suggested, during a lunchtime interview on Sony Six along with Thakur, that there should be a re-look at the options of whether to exclude LBW decisions out of the DRS.

Asked whether the BCCI was now thinking of having this option of excluding LBW decisions, Thakur said, “It can be selectively considered, but the ball is in the International Cricket Committee’s court.”

Thakur said a decision on India’s chief coach will be taken next month in consultation with Cricket Advisory Committee before the start of the South Africa home series in October.

South Africa will play four Tests, five ODIs and three T20Is during their 72-day long tour of India.

On the Cricket Advisory Committee comprising Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman, Thakur said, “It is very important to have them. They have played for many number of years and their experience will help enrich Indian cricket.”

“Their experience will help in matters of cricket format, coaching and support staff and whatever valuable suggestion comes from their side, they will be taken positively,” he said.

PTI