Chennai Super Kings could lose their home advantage for the rest of the 2018 season. The IPL is in discussions over moving games out of the city in the wake of protests during the venue’s first match and threats to disrupt more fixtures.
Ticket sales for the next game in Chennai, against Rajasthan Royals on April 20, have been put on hold, according to a TNCA official.
Chennai had hosted Kolkata Knight Riders on April 10, marking the return of the IPL to the city after the franchise had completed a two-year ban for corruption. However, the lead-up to the game was not peaceful, with political parties organising rallies in the vicinity of the MA Chidambaram Stadium, protesting the Cauvery river water issue, Tamil Nadu’s long-standing dispute with neighbouring state Karnataka. Several local political parties and fringe groups wanted a boycott of the IPL matches in Chennai the dispute was resolved.
There was trouble during the match as well. A group of spectators flung shoes in the vicinity of CSK players fielding on the boundary, prompting the intervention of police. The incident happened in the eighth over of the game, after which the concerned spectators were evicted from the ground and, as per reports, taken into custody. While there was no confirmation that the shoe-throwing incident was directly related to the Cauvery river issue, it was the likely cause.
More to follow