New Delhi: Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) curator Sudhir Naik has written a letter to the Board of Cricket for Control in India (BCCI), slamming Team India director Ravi Shastri for wanting a specific area of the wicket to be watered on the eve of the final ODI against South Africa at Wankhede.
In a letter which is obtained by Hindustan Times, Naik wrote, “Whenever international match is there, we get a message from BCCI( Team Management) at least 10-12 days in advance about their requirements. This time we did not get any message. So we prepared a good batting track. Two days before the match, we got the message that they want a turning wicket. Wicket was already prepared hard with good binding. Whatever possible to do now was done, like no watering, cutting of grass at zero level and very little rolling. Team management wanted us to water only good length area one day before the match. We as curators felt it is not advisable as two different shades will be seen. Also BCCI curator Mr. Dhiraj Parsana advised us not to put water.”
“After the first innings Mr Ravi Shastri said to me “Well done Sudhir, very good wicket”, to which I said thanks. Then he abused me and went in the dressing room. We have a complaint against Mr Bharat Arun Kumar also. He was after my assistant Mr Ramesh Mhamunkar and was coaxing him to put water on the pitch. On the day of the match he started firing him saying “you don’t listen to me, I have been calling you since yesterday night. Why aren’t you receiving my call?”
“I would like to ask management, who is Mr Bharat Arun Kumar and what right does he have to fire my assistant? His job is to coach bowlers, immediately after Mr Ravi Shastri abused me, I went and informed the incident to Mr Dilip Vengsakar (VP, MCA) and Prof RS Shetty (Game Development Manager BCCI).Such trends will spoil the harmony between Associations and BCCI. I request you both to reprimand both Mr Ravi Shastri and Mr Bharat Arun.” Sudhir Naik concluded in the letter written to BCCI.
The Wankhede pitch for the 5th ODI proved to be a flat track where Quinton de Kock, Faf du Plessis and skipper AB de Villiers slammed tons and gave MS Dhoni-led India a mammoth 438-run target. India failed to get near the target and were thrashed by 214 runs.
The Mumbai Cricket Association's managing committee will discuss Naik's complaint of verbal abuse against Shastri on October 30 in Mumbai.