Kashmir stars to watch turf tournament as spectators, can’t participate in Bijbehara Premiere League
By: Ahmed Shabir
Anantnag: Amid tussle between Kashmir’s cricket star, Parvez Rasool and Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA), organisers of Bijbehara Premier league, the first turf wicket cricket tournament in south Kashmir have questioned the cricket body’s directive to its registered players not to participate in local tournaments.
Bijbehara Premier League is being organized by Bijbehara Cricket Association at higher secondary ground Bijbehara. Twenty teams from different parts of the Valley are part of the tournament being played on turf wicket.
However, the players registered with JKCA and are playing national level cricket, following the latter’s directive have been left with no option but to watch the turf game only as spectators evoking criticism from the organisers of the cricket league.
Chairman of the Bijbehara Cricket Association, Naseer Ahmad Vaid while talking to Precious Kashmir said that JKCA by banning its registered players from participating in local tournaments seems to be targeting only Bijbehara Premier League (BPL).
“After Srinagar this is the second turf wicket in the Valley. Local boys playing various high profile tournaments at national level should have been encouraged to participate in this league given the availability of turf wicket but warning them against participation in the same creates doubts in our minds that the move is aimed to target the league from getting popular,” Vaid said.
Bijbehara has been a hub of cricket since decades and has the distinction of producing many best cricketers like Abdul Qayoom Bagaw and Parvez Rasool, both of whom have represented J&K at many national level cricket tournaments.
Parvez also has the distinction of being the first cricketer from the Valley to play international cricket.
The ground where BPL is being played is being maintained by BCA on its own.
“We don’t know what is going on between JKCA and Parvez Rasool but we are giving our blood and sweat to maintain this ground. We prepared two turf wickets here to benefit boys who aspire to play national and international cricket. If not international standard but I can say with authority that we have the national standard facility here to help the young cricketers but we wonder what wisdom is this to not allow the cricketers registered with JKCA to participate in the tournament,” Vaid rued adding ‘Parvez has been instrumental in all this whose contribution we cannot ignore.”
Though JKCA has barred its registered cricketers from playing all the local tournaments but members of BCA say that on ground the ban applies only on BPL.
“Many mat cricket tournaments are going on everywhere from north to south. As per our information JKCA registered cricketers are playing all such tournaments but a close watch is kept on them to ensure that they don’t participate in BPL,” the BCA, chairman said.
Another member of the BCA, Safdar Ahmad Salroo seconded Vaid saying the directive for cricketers playing national cricket under JKCA is implemented only on BPL.
“It was only a day after we started the tournament JKCA came up with the directive. Mat cricket is destroying the career of cricketers who aspire to make it big but we have evidence that most of the JKCA registered players are participating in the tournaments being played on mat but no one is being allowed to play BPL being played on turf. This is highly ironical,” Safdar told this newspaper.
Though BCA has even put up a representation with JKCA stating that the players registered with it be allowed in play BPL but the former did not get any reply.
“When JKCA came up with the directive we spoke to the people there and raised issue with them. They told us to apply for permission through e-mail. We even submitted a hard copy of the application mentioning that the turf cricket tournament will prepare the cricketers for national level tournaments but we haven’t received any response,” the BCA , chairman said..
Many cricketers registered with JKCA said that they are bearing the brunt of the tussle between Parvez Rasool and some JKCA officials. “We don’t know what is the dispute between JKCA and Parvez Rasool but whatever it is we are paying the price. This is injustice with us. We are not being allowed to play the cricket with national level facilities,” said a group of young cricketers registered with JKCA.
It’s in place to mention here that JKCA only a few days back accused Parvez of stealing roller and asked him to return the same or face police action.
However, Rasool, denied being in possession of any JKCA equipment and expressed surprise over how the cricketing body treats an international cricketer.
Speaking to a national daily, a JKCA official had said that the issue was being given hype unnecessarily.
“Parvez’s name was is in our register and we sent him a mail like other people in other districts in possession of JKCA equipments,” the official had told the national daily.
No top JKCA official could be reached for his version.