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BCCI-Sahara rift continues

Chennai , Mon, 13 Feb 2012 ANI

Chennai, Feb 13 (ANI): The rift between BCCI and Sahara continues to carry with the BCCI Working Committee on Monday rejecting several demands of the long-time sponsor and refusing to make "exceptions" for the company which will now have to decide its future in the IPL.


After over three hours of deliberation at its Working Committee meeting, the BCCI said it has communicated its decisions with regard to Sahara's demands to the company and was hoping for a "favourable response".


The BCCI also made it clear that while it could show some flexibility, it should not be expected to make exceptions for the corporate giant, which owns the costliest IPL team (Pune Warriors bought at Rs 1700 crore).


The BCCI's stand, which is being interpreted as tough, will mean that the week-long stalemate will persist for some more time till Sahara decides its future course of action.


Sahara had announced its decision to walk away from Indian cricket on February 4, an hour before the IPL auction was due to begin, in which the company did not take part in Bangalore.


In its formal statement, Sahara referred to several points of dispute with the BCCI, dating back to its first sponsorship deal in 2001 but largely relating to the IPL. It said it would "continue paying the sponsorship money" to the BCCI for a period of "2-4 months' it would take to find a new sponsor.


It is learnt that a major bone of contention was Sahara's fresh demand that they should be allowed to field six foreign players during the IPL, something that was outrightly rejected by the BCCI.


However, BCCI allowed Sahara owned Pune Warriors team to find a replacement for Yuvraj Singh who at present is undergoing chemotherapy in United States for treatment of cancer.


Sahara had signed a renewed sponsorship agreement with the BCCI on July 1, 2010 till December 31, 2013 and was paying Rs. 3.34 crore per Test match, one-day international and Twenty20 International under the new terms. The deal is said to be worth Rs. 532 crore.


Sahara entered the IPL bandwagon last year by buying Pune Warriors for Rs. 1702 crore, making it the costliest franchise in the Twenty20 event. (ANI)


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