Despite the fact that the last inspection for Sunday’s T20I game between India and Sri Lanka at the Barsapara Stadium in Guwahati conducted at 9:30 p.m. — 24 minutes before the match was officially called off — but Assam Cricket Association (ACA) Secretary Devajit Saikia has revealed that most of the cricketer had already left at 9 p.m.
Speaking to IANS, Saikia said even he was surprised how the last inspection was done by umpires Chettithody Shamshuddin, Nitin Menon, Anil Chaudhary and match referee David Boon at 9:30 p.m. when most of the players had left the stadium at 9 p.m.
Saikia explained, “Well, that is a mystery to me and I will have to find it out because most of the players had left by 9 p.m. That announcement (calling off at 9:54 p.m.) was strategic to ensure that the crowd didn’t turn unruly. That is the usual protocol that is followed. I have given you the hard facts.”
In fact, Saikia said that the match officials had clarified that the ground staff that the ground had to be ready for action by 8:45 p.m else the match would have been abandoned.
The ACA secretary further added, “For one hour and three minutes there was heavy shower and umpires said we need to get the ground ready by 8:45 p.m. otherwise the match will be abandoned. 57 minutes was given to the groundsmen to get it ready. If we had some more time, we could have readied the ground. There was dampness throughout the pitch due to reverse osmosis system and what was said on commentary, I can’t comment on that.”
The ACA secretary also said that no rain was expected at this time of the year in Guwahati. He said that even after the rain was stopped, there was a lot of humidity in the atmosphere. He also expected that if they had been given an hour or half an hour, the ground would have been ready.