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Wrong room lands Devang in trouble

Devang was asked to leave the dressing room as soon as Manoj reported the matter to the ACU official

A Staff Reporter Calcutta Published 26.12.19, 09:47 PM
Devang Gandhi

Devang Gandhi Telegraph picture

Devang Gandhi was asked to leave the Bengal dressing room by an Anti-corruption Unit (ACU) official at Eden Gardens on Thursday after senior pro Manoj Tiwary complained of the national selector’s “unauthorised entry”.

According to Tiwary, who had lambasted the national selector last August after being snubbed for the Duleep Trophy, Devang had gone to the dressing room “for some treatment” from the Bengal physio which amounts to violation of rules.


As soon as he reported the matter to the ACU official, Devang was asked to leave the dressing room. Thursday was the second day of the Bengal-Andhra Ranji Trophy match.

“As per the anti-corruption protocol, only players and support staff are allowed inside the dressing room. The national selector had no business coming there.

“So obviously, I took strong objection to his presence and duly made the anti-corruption official take note of the matter. Accordingly, the official asked the selector to leave,” the former Bengal captain told reporters during lunch on Thursday.

Sources in the Bengal team as well as the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) confirmed that Devang was present in the dressing room for around 15-20 minutes in the morning to receive treatment from the physio.

The incident had some sort of similarity with the one back in the 2009-10 season when Sambaran Banerjee — then CAB chief selector — found himself at the centre of a controversy for entering the dressing room. Devang, for his part, claimed: “I was at the CAB medical room. I told the physio to come there.”

However, later he said: “I was sitting outside the boundary, which I’m entitled to being a selector. I am having a back problem and Lalji (Bengal coach Arun Lal) asked me to come to the dressing room and consult the physio.

“I took the anti-corruption official’s permission before entering the dressing room and then took the physio to the CAB medical room.”

Lal, when queried about Devang’s claim, declined to comment on the issue.

A statement from the CAB, however, said Devang was allowed to enter the Players and Match Officials Area (PMOA) as a temporary visitor by the ACU official only after obtaining permission from the match referee. It added that Devang was “instantly asked” by the ACU officer to leave the PMOA after the latter came to know that he was getting medical treatment in the restricted area. “…When Mr Gandhi wanted to get some medical treatment done and the same was informed to the ACU officer, he was instantly asked by the ACU officer to get the same done at the medical room outside the PMOA in order to maintain the required protocols. Accordingly, Mr Gandhi moved to the medical room forthwith to ensure there is no breach,” the statement read.

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