Allegations fly, J&K cricket grounded

Srinagar, Dec. 1 -- The cricket row in Jammu & Kashmir took a turn for the worse when the replaced skipper, Samiullah Beigh, withdrew from the squad for the next Ranji Trophy match.

Simultaneously, Jammu & Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA) treasurer Manzoor Wazir also resigned on Friday, saying he could not live up to expectations. "The players had a lot of expectations from me, which I could not fulfill. My position doesn't allow me to interfere in the selection process."

Beigh, who was replaced by Ian Dev Singh at the helm on Thursday, withdrew from the squad, along with another senior player Majid Dar, as the team left for Guwahati for the Ranji match against Assam.

"Removing me from captaincy is not the issue. But what has hurt us is unfair selection. Players who have scored five ducks in the last six innings have been selected because they are blue-eyed boys of (Bishan Singh) Bedi," said Beigh.

Allegations of bias

It may be recalled that Beigh and seven other players had boycotted the match against Andhra Pradesh, alleging bias in selection against players from the Kashmir region. The former captain had publicly blamed coach, Bedi, for the "mess".

"Bedi is conspiring against genuine players from Kashmir. Although he is not in the selection committee, he is running the show behind the curtains," accused Beigh.

Bedi, when asked for his reaction, refused to comment. "I don't want to react." But sources close to him say that he feels some of the protesting players are over the hill and are hampering the careers of others by drawing them into this.

JKCA president Farooq Abdullah didn't answer calls made by HT regarding the issue.

Published by HT Syndication with permission from Hindustan Times.


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