IPL semi-finals moved amid security concerns
The IPL moves towards its climax later this week despite fresh security concerns.
Two small devices exploded before a match at Bangalore’s Chinnaswamy Stadium on Saturday, forcing organisers to switch the semi-final’s due to be played there to Mumbai.
The match took place, allegedly against the wishes of Bangalore Royal Challengers’ Kevin Pietersen and Jacques Kallis, and more rudimentary devices were later destroyed by police.
Leading figures at the Professional Cricketers Association, which represent English players, have voiced their concerns over player safety ahead of the 2011 World Cup, less than a year away.
The PCA’s legal director Ian Smith summed up their worst fears.
“It’s becoming a more and more dangerous place, the risk profile is only headed in one direction,” he said.
“If it’s not safe today, what makes us think it’s going to be safe in a year’s time?”
Security fears forced last year’s IPL to be relocated to South Africa but despite concerns prior to this year’s tournament, it returned to India.
The tournaments Chairman Lalit Modi played down the significance of the attacks, but some foreign cricketers are showing increasing signs of unease at playing on the sub-continent.
The scare also comes at an already awkward time for the competition, which has been beset by allegations of financial irregularity in recent weeks.
India hosts 29 of next years 39 World Cup fixtures, starting in February.
The number has already risen by eight after the tragic Lahore attacks on the Sri Lankan team last year led to Pakistan losing their 14 scheduled games.