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Indian board wants ICC to intervene in Pakistan dispute

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    Indian board wants ICC to intervene in Pakistan dispute

    India's threat to boycott the World Cup was an attempt to get the ICC to intervene following the country's refusal to play Pakistan, an Indian cricket official said on Thursday.

    The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said on Tuesday it would boycott major events such as the World Cup and the ICC Knockout tournament until the government clarified its guidelines over which teams it was allowed to play.

    The boycott threat came after the BCCI received a government letter saying the team was not to play at ``non-regular'' venues such as Sharjah and Singapore for the next three years.

    ``We want the International Cricket Council to intervene on the Pakistan problem.'' the official, who did not want to be identified, told Reuters.

    ``It (the threat) is a deliberate attempt on our part to shock the ICC. Nobody would contemplate not playing in the World Cup. We can send the guidelines to the ICC and they can't remain silent observers.''

    ICC president Malcolm Gray said in New Delhi last month that the sport's ruling body would not penalise India for refusing to play Pakistan, but could try to persuade the government to change its mind.

    The government has refused to allow the team to play in a Tri-Nation one-day tournament in Sharjah that also involves Pakistan. It also cancelled last year's scheduled test tour of Pakistan.

    Relations between the two neighbouring countries have been strained because of continuing political tensions over the disputed Himalayan state of Kashmir.

    The government has reacted to the BCCI's threat, with sports minister Uma Bharti saying on Wednesday there was no need for it to clarify its guidelines.

    She also ruled out any chance of the government changing its decision not to allow India to play Pakistan.

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    It is really pathetic that the gutless and shameless BCCI now wants a foreign body to intervene on their behalf with the saffron brigade.
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