No takers for West Indies-Netherlands tie

Last Updated: Feb 28, 2011, 18:06 PM IST

New Delhi: A handful of bussed-in school children and a few dotting heads here and there were all the stands at the Feroze Shah Kotla Stadium played host to during the Group B World Cup match between West Indies and the Netherlands here on Monday.

The prospect of a one-sided encounter seemed to have taken a toll on the match. That it was the first working day of the week only made the local association and the securitymen`s work much easier.

An audience of just about 2,500 in a stadium which can fill up to 35,000 was a far cry from last night`s India-England humdinger which was played in front of a packed Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore.

"It will be around 2000-2500. I don`t think the figures will be more than that," a Delhi District and Cricket Association official said.

The turnout, understandably, was much bigger during the West Indies-South Africa match, the stadium`s opening fixture of the tournament, which saw a turnout of about 10,000.

The Delhi High Court had earlier granted permission to the DDCA to put online only 5,000 tickets of all denominations instead of 30,000, as per the court`s previous order, for general public and allowed the plea not to print 15,000 tickets for the first two matches at the venue.

The court also told the DDCA to give 15,000 tickets to banks for public sale and made it clear that only unsold tickets would be distributed as complementary passes.

Crowd, or the lack of it, has been the International Cricket Council`s biggest cause for concern -- apart from the ticketing mess -- in the quadrennial extravaganza.

The India-England tie in Bangalore, Pakistan`s face-off with Sri Lanka at the Premadasa Satdium in Colombo and the tournament opener at Mirpur, Bangladesh, though, were some of the welcome aberrations.