Scared bat-makers refuse to revive J&K unit
MEERUT: Citing security concerns, experts from UP’s Meerut have turned down “lucrative offers” to go to Kashmir and train locals to revive a cricket bat manufacturing unit in the volatile Anantnag region, officials said on Friday. As a result, the unit which was set up at a cost of nearly Rs 5 crore currently lies idle.
Over a month ago, members of the Sports Goods Export Promotion Council (SGEPC), a central government-backed organisation, and officials of Process-cum-Product Development Centre (PPDC) in Meerut, a unit of Union ministry of MSME, were contacted by senior authorities of skills development in Jammu and Kashmir. They requested SGEPC to establish a bat manufacturing training centre in the Valley and urged PPDC officials to send at least six trainers from UP.
A common facility centre at Sethar in Anantnag district was then set up at a cost of Rs 4.61 crore, including Rs 2.46 crore spent on plant and machinery installed by PPDC. SGEPC member Sumnesh Agarwal said, “Meerut is known for manufacturing world class cricket bats. Hence, J&K authorities are trying to rope in artisans and experts from here. But, none of them are willing to go to Kashmir due to safety issues.”
A PPDC official, requesting anonymity, said, “This is despite the fact that a trainer is promised Rs 20,000 per month apart from food, lodging and other amenities. Security concerns can’t be overlooked though. Anantnag has recently witnessed a series of targeted violence against outsiders.”
Incidentally, there are seven clusters in Anantnag district where a common facility centre was set up by MSME.
“Kashmir is known for its good quality willow, a wood considered to be most suitable for cricket bats, while Meerut, known for manufacturing world class cricket bats, is home to a large number of craftsmen. Also, movement of Kashmir willow to the outside world is banned in its raw wood form and can be transported only in the form of semi-finished products. So, the bat industry in Meerut largely depends on willow imported from England at a very high cost,” the official added.
As Prime Minister Narendra Modi Saturday hosted the Indian contingent, which returned with 61 medals from the Birmingham Commonwealth Games, Sunita Thakur and Vinod Thakur sat intently watching his address on social media. The mother-son duo, at their native village Parsa in Himachal Pradesh’s Rohru district, were all ears as PM mentioned about Renuka Thakur who claimed 11 wickets, including two four-wicket hauls, for the silver medal winning Indian women’s cricket team.
India is set to tour Zimbabwe later this month for an ODI series. India tour of Zimbabwe 2022 will consist of only an ODI series. During the series, three ODI games will be played between India and Zimbabwe.
The IND vs ZIM 1st ODI will take place on August 18. The 2nd ODI will be played on August 20 while the 3rd ODI will be played on August 22. The venue of all the ODI games is Harare Sports Club in Harare, Zimbabwe.
India Squad for Zimbabwe ODIs: Shikhar Dhawan (Captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Avesh Khan, Prasidh Krishna, Mohd Siraj, Deepak Chahar.
Cricket chases the American dream
In March this year, the owners of Major League Cricket (MLC) announced plans to invest around $110 million (approx. Rs 875 crore) to build and renovate eight stadiums in the United States of America. In May, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was announced as a lead investor in a $44 million fundraise by MLC, with another $76 million pledged, primarily for cricket infrastructure upgrades across the vast country. The Knight Riders group is already among the early stakeholders in the six-team MLC, which is planned to begin next year.
Women’s IPL to be held in March 2023
The much-awaited Women’s IPL will be starting from March 2023 to be held in a one-month window and in all likelihood with five teams, a senior BCCI official confirmed the development on Friday.
The BCCI bigwigs have discussed the issue and a March window has been found for the tournament after the Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa.”Yes, the WIPL will start in the first week of March and we have earmarked a four-week window for the first year. The T20 World Cup in South Africa is from February 9 to 26 and immediately after that we plan to hold the WIPL,” a senior BCCI official privy to the development told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
“As of now, we are going ahead with five teams but it could be six as there is a lot of interest among potential investors. In due course of time, the process of auctioning of teams will be announced,” he added.
No Indian player, contracted or retired and playing in IPL, will be allowed by the Indian cricket board to feature in the two upcoming T20 leagues of South Africa and UAE. No one playing in the IPL would be even allowed to be a mentor in these overseas leagues.
Or in other words, Chennai Super Kings (CSK) Cricket Limited can’t use its icon player MS Dhoni even in a mentorship role for its team in SA T20 League as he is still playing for CSK in IPL.
“It’s clear, no Indian player including domestic players can take part in any other league until he is retired from all forms of the game. If any player wants to take part in these upcoming leagues he can only do so when he cuts off all ties with the BCCI,” a BCCI official told The Indian Express.
India crush Windies in opening T20I
Rohit Sharma's elegant half-century and Dinesh Karthik's blazing finish were backed up by a solid bowling performance as India made short work of the West Indies with an easy 68-run victory in the first T20I on Friday.
India (IND) in West Indies (WI), 1st T20 Live Score and Updates: The Indian team will look to keep up the momentum against West Indies in their bid to record a second successive clean sweep in the three-match T20I series starting Friday.