BCCI won't decide anything in haste: Rajeev Shukla

IPL chief Rajeev Shukla (R) seemed optimistic about resolving the matter and said Pune Warriors is still associated with IPL AFP

New Delhi: Feb 6, 2012

Jolted after Sahara pulled out as sponsor of the Indian cricket team and owner of IPL franchise Pune Warriors, the BCCI is desperately trying to make up with the corporate giant and said it “doesn’t want to decide anything in haste”.

Two days after Sahara snapped its 11-year-old association with Indian cricket, the BCCI said it is “open for dialogue” with the company to sort out the issue.

“We are open to discussions, open for dialogue because they have been our partner for 11 years. We don’t want anything to be decided in haste,” BCCI vice-president and IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla said.

Sahara decided to part ways with the BCCI on Saturday morning, an hour before the IPL 2012 auction – which went ahead without any representation from Pune Warriors.

The group complained that the BCCI did not give due consideration to its genuine grievances with regards to players and number of matches in the IPL.

Sahara’s pullout means the fate of Pune Warriors players also remains uncertain and in case they don’t get a new franchise, they may not be able to play at all.

But Shukla seemed optimistic about resolving the matter and said Pune Warriors is still associated with IPL.

“So far they (Sahara Pune Warriors) are still an IPL franchise unless we get anything in writing from them. We are extremely positive,” the IPL chief maintained.

Sahara had signed a renewed sponsorship agreement with the BCCI on July 1, 2010 till December 31, 2013 and was paying Rs 3.34 crore per Test match, one-day international and Twenty20 International under the new terms. The deal is said to be worth Rs 532 crore.

Sahara entered the IPL bandwagon last year by buying Pune Warriors for Rs 1702 crore, making it the costliest franchise in the Twenty20 event.

The BCCI stands to lose Rs 2234 crore if Sahara sticks to its stand. However, the Board can find another sponsor to neutralise the losses.(PTI)