IPL 2019: Locked gates leave Royals' players stuck outside stadium

The Rajasthan Royals players including Ajinkya Rahane had to wait for half an hour before the franchise officials intervened and got things sorted.

Rajasthan Royals will play its first match at the SMS Stadium on Monday, when it takes on Kings XI Punjab (File photo).   -  Rohit Jain Paras

Rajasthan Royals captain and India international, Ajinkya Rahane, a couple of other players and support staff were denied entry into the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur on Saturday morning as the stadium gates were locked.

The players had to wait for half an hour before the franchise officials intervened and got things sorted.

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The RCA officials, however, downplayed the issue and passed the buck to the sports council. “It is true that the players, who had come for training, had to wait for 15-20 minutes, but it was because of some security issues by the sports council,” RCA secretary, Mahendra Nahar, told Sportstar.

Elaborating further, Nahar said that the sports council had to take such an action after “some of the locals went inside the dressing room” on Friday. “Maintaining the law and order is of utmost importance and that’s the reason, the security officers at the stadium wanted to get things in place and that’s why the gates were locked. There’s nothing more to it,” he said.

The Royals officials, however, remained tight-lipped on the issue.

Rajasthan state sports council secretary, Arun Kumar Hasija, told this publication that the gates were locked for an hour as the sports council had to do a survey. “The property other than the one allotted to the RCA is also being used for the IPL, so we were conducting a survey on that property for rent assessment. That’s the reason gates were locked and no vehicles were allowed to enter the premises,” Hasija said.

IPL returned to Jaipur last year, and the Sawai Mansingh Stadium hosted all the seven home games of Rajasthan Royals. In the last edition of the tournament, the Rajasthan state sports council and the Rajasthan Cricket Association also were in a tussle during the IPL over ticketing issues and security.

Rajasthan Royals will play its first match at the SMS Stadium on Monday, when it takes on Kings XI Punjab.