Not enough time to ensure IPL safety in England: Police

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Senior police officials in London believe they do not have enough time to ensure foolproof security for the second edition of the IPL.

Updated: March 24, 2009 08:31 IST
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Senior police officials here believe they do not have enough time to ensure foolproof security for the second edition of the Indian Premier League, dealing a further blow to England's chances of hosting the Twenty20 tournament.

With the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) deciding to shift the lucrative IPL since its dates are clashing with the Lok Sabha elections, England and South Africa emerged as the preferred destination.

IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi is currently in England and will then travel to Johannesburg to discuss logistics before taking a final call on the tournament's venue.

But weather has posed a major problem for England and with police now expressing inability to provide security, it definitely is a huge blow since safety of players, officials and fans have become paramount in the aftermath of the March 3 terror attack on Sri Lanka cricketers in Lahore.

Police officers here said they were not consulted by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) officials before declaring their readiness to stage the IPL.

"Frankly, they've (ECB) been getting a bit ahead of themselves. The focus has to be on the security of the crowds who would watch these matches, not on how much money they stand to make," an unnamed police officer was quoted as saying by 'The Times'.

"There is a lot more work to be done before people are confident about the logistics and the security issues," he added.

The IPL is scheduled to start on April 10. In the week before, London hosts the G20 summit of world leaders for which all police leave has been cancelled since authorities apprehend violence and disorder.

Moreover, the FA Cup semi-finals and final and the London Marathon are among events that also clash with the IPL. However, if England does host the tournament, then IPL organisers could be asked to foot the bill for security which could be as much as five million pounds.

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