McCullum backs location change for IPL

March 23rd, 2009 - 1:32 pm ICT by ANI  

Wellington, Mar 23 (ANI): New Zealand vice-captain Brendon McCullum has backed the decision to shift the Indian Premier League from India due to a clash of schedules with general elections.

McCullum is one of eight New Zealand players contracted to the lucrative Twenty20 competition; last night learned the tournament would be moved to South Africa or England.

The 59-match tournament, scheduled for April 10 to May 24, clashed with the Indian general election campaign between April 16 and May 13.

Its a sensible decision based on the situation in India with the elections, the Waikato Times quoted him, as saying.

If you cant guarantee the safety of the players involved in the tournament, it makes it pretty hard to hold the tournament, regardless of where it is. Its disappointing not to play in India because its an amazing place. They get right behind the tournament, he said.

McCullum said he had not decided whether to join the Kolkata franchise before last nights development.

Security concerns had dominated the build-up to the eight-team event, involving many big name international players, after a deadly attack on the Sri Lankan team bus in the Pakistani city of Lahore on March 3.

NZCPA executive manager Heath Mills said his organisation had security concerns for some time.

Weve had concerns for two or three months about travelling to India and the level of security that was going to be in place around the event, Mills told NZPA.

He said the NZCPA had worked hard to convince the IPL to get player associations involved in the security check process but those attempts were unsuccessful.

Other than McCullum, Jesse Ryder, Kyle Mills, Ross Taylor, Daniel Vettori, Jacob Oram, and Scott Styris are contracted to the IPL as players. Former captain Stephen Fleming will coach the Chennai franchise. (ANI)

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