The BCCI could have handled the scheduling and ticketing process of the World Cup in a better way, says former India pacer Venkatesh Prasad, who insisted that his outburst on social media on the issue is in no way a tirade against any individual. (More Cricket News)
The ICC in consultation with hosts BCCI rescheduled as many as nine games, including the marquee India vs Pakistan match, which was originally scheduled on October 15 in Ahmedabad but had to be advanced by a day on account of Navratri celebrations.
Prasad has often taken to social media platform 'X' (formerly twitter) to share his opinion and on Saturday in a series a of tweets he criticised BCCI.
However one tweet that caught attention: "It takes one corrupt, arrogant guy to take away the hardwork of an otherwise non-corrupt organisation and spoil the reputation of an entire organisation & the impact isn’t just micro but at a macro level. This is true in every field, be it politics, sports, journalism, corporate."
While he did not mention any name, there were conjectures on social media on who could have been Prasad's target of ire.
"Nothing personal, just observation," Prasad told PTI when asked if it was meant towards any particular official.
So were you misinterpreted?
"100 percent. That (corrupt) I meant generally in all aspects of life. Be it airline industry, banking industry, even IPL franchises have been banned as well.
"Since in my other tweets, I had tweeted about tickets, it looked mixed up. My criticism for BCCI was clear about the ticketing and scheduling," he said, clarifying his position.
Many in BCCI believe that since he hasn't been a part of system for sometime, he has been angry? "Not at all. I have, in-fact been offered positions but not ready for it," he vehemently denied any such conjectures.
For him, he was only pointing at what everyone is talking about the organisational part.
"Nothing personal. Just a clear observation and many people have expressed displeasure at the way ticketing is , fans as well as friends from overseas," said the former pacer, who played significant role in India's victory over Pakistan in back-to-back World Cup editions in 1996 and 1999.
Prasad said that while he acknowledged BCCI's good work, he didn't want to turn a blind eye on aspects which left a lot to be desired.
"There are many things which the BCCI is doing right like equal pay for men and women but I truly believe they haven’t handled the World Cup ticketing and schedule well and this has brought a lot of inconvenience and heartbreak for genuine fans," said India's former bowling coach and former chairman of junior national selection committee.
His angry tweet against fact-checker Mohammed Zubair has been construed as an after-thought and something to balance out his scathing attack on BCCI.
"Absolutely not. It was that guy (Zubair) who replied to me and has used derogatory language. Thought it apt to reply and call him out."
Zubair, in a later tweet, termed Prasad as "Fattu", a colloquial hindi slang calling someone "coward"