The Man from Madras Musings learns from reliable sources that matters are afoot once again in the piece of hallowed green where many a cricket match was played in our city. For years now, as is well known, this glorious turf has remained silent chiefly because of some misunderstandings over the alphabet. The TNCA which is responsible for the place had built its new stadium and was so confident of itself that it built three extra stands, namely I, J & K for which no permission had been taken from the CMDA (or is it the COC, MMM forgets which). Anyway, the appropriate authority saw red over this flouting of rules and refused to permit the opening of these three stands, namely I, J & K.
For years it has been the practice for cricket matches to happen without these three stands being opened up and there matters rested. Not that Chennai has really been a hot favourite for the staging of matches even though the CSK team is a popular one in the IPL sweepstakes. There have been controversies over featuring players from Sri Lanka and then, when that matter was rather unsatisfactorily resolved, a superstar now in some hot water raked up the Cauvery water issue and ensured that matches were held elsewhere.
Now it appears that there is a rethink. The Govt. of TN and its arm, namely the CMDA or is it the COC, has softened and offered that panacea for all ills, namely the process of regularization. Yes, it is true that the TNCA did not take permission for the construction of stands I, J &K but who does not err, and is it not true that to forgive is divine? And as always, there is a sacrificial offering to be made. MMM understands that this is the neighbouring MCC, which it appears will be brought down in part so that the stands I, J & K can be regularized. To MMM it all appears to be a rather convoluted way of sorting matters out but then he realizes that there was no other way either. The new design for the MCC, which anyway is being rebuilt, MMM is informed, is very good. But he will still miss some of the old spots when they make way in the larger interests of I, J &K.
Perhaps the powers that be at the TNCA and the MCC could have left matters as it is and administered stands I, J &K as a Union Territory of sorts. But that is just an idle thought. Here is to the robust future of the new MCC and to the filling up of stands I, J & K. And may we see more cricket – tests, ODI and IPLs.