BCCI defends Srinivasan, says Lalit Modi is a liar

Zeecric Bureau

Mumbai: BCCI President Shashank Manohar on Saturday defended Secretary and said that all allegations made by suspended IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi were nothing but lies.

Modi had claimed earlier that N Srinivasan fixed the 2009 players’ auction.

Manohar told reporters after the Working Committee meeting here that Modi’s accusations against Srinivasan, who owns the Chennai Super Kings team, were “blatant lies” and that he had proof to defend it.

“I can produce papers which prove that the charges levelled by Mr Modi against Mr Srinivasan are blatant lies,” Manohar said.

When asked if the evidence were produced in the meeting were accepted by the committee members, Manohar replied affirmatively.

Two days ago Srinivasan, had rubbished reports that he tried to ‘fix’ the players’ auction and insisted he won the bid for star England all-rounder Andrew Flintoff “fair and square”.

A TV channel had claimed that Srinivasan, in connivance with Modi, tried to fix the bid for Flintoff in the Super Kings’ favour.

The channel had quoted an email purportedly written by Modi to Srinivasan, which read “what a nightmare to convince them not to terminate (Sohail) Tanvir and also not to take Flintoff. (Shane) Warne went off the handle. But have managed it by using stick and carrot strategy. Thus they have USD 1.875 million. Much love Lalit”.

Warne is the captain-cum-coach of Rajasthan Royals.

Srinivasan, refuting the charges while talking to another TV channel, had said he didn’t do anything wrong and his franchise outbid Rajasthan Royals as only they had the full purse of USD 2 million.

“I didn’t need anybody’s favour. Rajasthan Royals bid for USD 1.5 million for Flintoff, I beat them at USD 1.55 million. So where is the deal? How can I have any deal? How can Modi have control of Shane Warne unless he is the owner of the Rajasthan Royals,” he had said.

“Hundred per cent I’m telling you, we did nothing wrong. We won fair and square. We were the only one who could have bought new players because I had the full purse. I didn’t need anybody’s favour,” the BCCI Secretary had said.

“The Chennai Super Kings is the only team which had the USD two million in the purse. Everybody else had less, so we didn’t need anybody’s favour to buy Flintoff.”

Incidentally this is not the first time that Srinivasan has found himself in a controversy. A few days back, the BCCI Secretary was accused of ‘fixing’ umpires for Super Kings matches during the IPL.

The video of the players’ auction was shown to the Working Committee members at today’s meeting, said former India captain Dilip Vengsarkar, who is Vice-President of Mumbai Cricket Association.

BCCI chief Manohar also said he was yet to decide when to press criminal charges against Modi as authorised by the Board’s EGM on July 3.

“I will decide when to press criminal charges against Mr Modi and I will inform you (accordingly),” he told reporters outside the BCCI headquarters here.

The only other matter taken up today at the meeting was the annual accounts ahead of next month’s AGM, the Board chief said.

Meanwhile, the BCCI’s Annual General Body Meeting will be held here on September 29.

BCCI CAO Prof. Ratnakar Shetty said that the players’ auction was done in a transparent manner.

For Andrew Flintoff there were four bidders in all before Chennai Super Kings clinched the England all-rounder with a winning bid of USD 1.55 million, Shetty explained.

“The bid started at 950,000 USD by Chennai Super Kings, which was taken up to USD 1.3 million by Kings XI Punjab who then did not have any more money to spend,” he said.

“Delhi Daredevils entered the fray at 1.4 million which was followed by Rajasthan Royals’ bid of 1.5 million and both had exhausted their money,” Shetty said.

Finally it was left to CSK, which had the full amount of USD 2 million cap to spend, to bag Flintoff at USD 1.55 million, he said.

Shetty also refuted media, especially electronic, allegations that the umpires postings were fixed in favour of Chennai Super Kings.

“The postings were done by Umpires Director S Venkataraghavan and the other members of the Umpires Committee. Mr Srinivasan, in his capacity as BCCI secretary, only forwarded the list to the IPL which is as per procedure,” he informed.

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