BCCI, Sahara set to bury hatchet?

Top brass of the Board of Control for Cricket in India and the Sahara Group will meet here on Sunday in a bid to break the stalemate which prompted the corporate giant to withdraw sponsorship of the Indian team and also pull out of the IPL.

Sahara Group supremo Subroto Roy will meet BCCI president N Srinivasan and IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla in order to resolve the issues amid indications that both parties are keen to find a solution to pave the way for Pune Warriers’ return to the IPL fold.

According to reliable BCCI sources, both parties have come down from the rigid stance they had taken initially and are ready to bury the hatchet.

“Neither Sahara nor the BCCI would like to close the door on each other especially after sharing a fruitful relationship for over a decade. That both parties have decided to sit across the table and sort out their differences is a step in the right direction,” a senior BCCI official said.

The bone of contention was Sahara seeking a replacement for Yuvraj Singh, who is undergoing treatment for a malignant lung tumour in the United States. The franchise wanted that Yuvraj’s salary of $1.8 million be added to their kitty of $1.6 million after they spent $400,000 on retaining Sourav Ganguly.

The BCCI also turned down their requests of getting the first right of draft as well as Ganguly being inducted as Yuvraj’s replacement so that they can go into auction with $2 million.

Now with the auctions over, it will be interesting to see what kind of ‘amicable settlement’ the parties concerned reach. The two marquee Indian players, Ravindra Jadeja and R Vinay Kumar, were snapped up by Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore respectively during the auctions and Pune Warriors don’t have too many options left.

One of the settlement options can be allowing Pune Warriors to go with five foreigners for this season instead of four. A precedent has been set earlier when Mumbai Indians were allowed a fifth foreign player during last year’s Champions League T20.

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