New Delhi, Nov 5: Veteran India discard Gautam Gambhir on Sunday (November 4) slammed the BCCI, Committee of Administrators (CoA) and Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) for allowing tainted Mohammed Azharuddin to ring the bell at the Eden Gardens ahead of the first T20I encounter between India and West Indies.
Azharuddin rang the bell at the venue to signal the start of the match which wasn't liked by the Delhi cricketer. Gambhir took to his Twitter handle to slam the Supreme Court-appointed CoA, BCCI as well as the CAB - which is helmed by former India captain Sourav Ganguly - for honouring a tainted cricketer.
"India may have won today at Eden but I am sorry @bcci, CoA &CAB lost. Looks like the No Tolerance Policy against Corrupt takes a leave on Sundays! I know he was allowed to contest HCA polls but then this is shocking....The bell is ringing, hope the powers that be are listening," tweeted Gambhir.
India may have won today at Eden but I am sorry @bcci, CoA &CAB lost. Looks like the No Tolerance Policy against Corrupt takes a leave on Sundays! I know he was allowed to contest HCA polls but then this is shocking....The bell is ringing, hope the powers that be are listening. pic.twitter.com/0HKbp2Bs9r— Gautam Gambhir (@GautamGambhir) November 4, 2018
Azhar, who was the most successful captain for India before Ganguly, has several fond memories of Eden Gardens where he helped India beat West Indies in the finals of 1993 Hero Cup.
Azharuddin, who has represented India in 99 Tests and 334 ODIs, was banned by the Indian cricket board for his alleged involvement in the 2000 match-fixing scandal. However, the ban was lifted in 2012 by the Andhra Pradesh High Court.
Initially, Azhar wished to contest for the Hyderabad Cricket Association elections but the BCCI rejected his application citing lack of clarity on the status of a ban. However, he was allowed to contest the polls, earlier this year, by the BCCI. The board stated that he was no longer prohibited from holding any position in the BCCI, ICC or any other affiliate body.
Gambhir has also had a special bond with Eden Gardens for he led the Kolkata-based IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) to the IPL glory twice under his captaincy.
India meanwhile defeated West Indies by 5 wickets in the opening T20I game in Kolkata to go 1-0 up in the three-match series. Chasing a target of 110, India reached home in 17.5 overs with 5 wickets to spare. Kuldeep Yadav, who plays for KKR, was named the man of the match for his figures of 3/13 while KKR's current captain Dinesh Karthik took India home with his composed batting.