Delhi's Kotla will not host Test against South Africa

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Delhi's Kotla has lost the chance to host a Test match between India and South Africa to be held in February or March next year.

Updated: December 28, 2009 16:58 IST
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New Delhi:

After the embarrassing pitch fiasco on Sunday, Delhi's Feroz Shah Kotla ground has lost out on hosting a Test match between India and South Africa early next year.

The South Africa-India series will be held in February and March next year. Though the list of venues had not been announced yet, Kotla was in contention to host one of the two Test matches to be played during the series.

However, Ratnakar Shetty of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has said that it has been decided that the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) will not get to host this match after the fiasco.

Also Read:

Decision on Kotla ground in a month: ICC
Pitch important, not a fancy stadium: Pawar
Kotla pitched confused Gavaskar as well
Members of DDCA pitch committee resign

A two-member inquiry committee is also being set up to look into the Kotla pitch mess-up. (In Pics: Kotla ODI abandoned)

On Sunday, the nation watched stunned as the fifth One-Day International between Sri Lanka and India was abandoned after 23.3 overs had been bowled with the guests complaining that the pitch was dangerous. What made it worse was that this was the national capital. Irate spectators turned violent at the ground and the entire DDCA pitch committee resigned later in the day. (Read: Poor Kotla pitch leads to ODI abandonment)

International Cricket Council (ICC) vice president Sharad Pawar has also spoken out on the issue saying it's the ground and pitch that matter the most, not a fancy stadium.

After the ICC receives the match referee's full report on the incident, it will write to the BCCI within five days demanding an explanation for the incident.

The BCCI will have 14 days to respond to the ICC. If ICC decides the pitch was sub-standard, penalties can range from a warning to a fine or suspension.

Match Referee Alan Hurst had issued a statement after the match was abandoned on Sunday. He said:

"The decision to abandon the match was taken by myself, in consultation with the on-field umpires Marais Erasmus and Shavir Tarapore, and both captains as it was clear that the pitch had extremely variable bounce and was too dangerous for further play.

"Before abandoning the match, consideration was given to shifting the match to a secondary pitch. However, it was deemed impractical as the secondary pitch was not adequately prepared," Hurst said in his statement.

However, the ICC's chief executive has said Feroz Shah Kotla can still retain hope of hosting the 2011 World Cup matches.


Are the cricket fans in India to blame as well for allowing themselves to be treated badly repeatedly?
Should Delhi be banned from hosting international games?

"It is not fair to say it hangs in the balance because you cannot comment till you know what the facts are," Haroon Lorgat said minutes after landing in New Delhi, where he will be presenting the ICC mace to the Indian captain MS Dhoni on Sunday evening for becoming the world's No.1 Test team.

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